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religious beliefs. Last year, the state Department of Agriculture announced that Michigan cattle leaving farms must be tagged in the ear with electronic identification as part of an effort to combat bovine tuberculosis. In April, Glen Mast and other Amish farmers appeared before the state Senate Appropriations Committee, urging it to block the program. So far, the state has not forced the Amish to use the electronic tags but said they can wait until the animals arrive at an auction before having them applied. Animal identification has traditionally involved a plastic or metal tag, or tattoo. Electronic ID uses a radio frequency device with a number unique to each animal, and speeds up the ability to locate or trace animals. S o u r c e : h t t p : / / w w w . w o o d t v . c o m / G l o b a l / s t o r y . a s p ? S = 6 9 5 2 1 1 5 & n a v = m e n u 4 4 _ 2

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    August 20, Agence France−Presse China probably 'covered up' pig disease outbreaks. Local authorities may have covered up outbreaks of a disease that has killed tens of thousands of pigs in China, the nation's chief vet said Sunday, August 19. The highly infectious blue−ear pig disease has killed 68,000 pigs across China and led to another 175,000 being slaughtered, Jia Youling, chief veterinary officer at the Ministry of Agriculture, told reporters. Some Western press reports have said the number of infected pigs is much higher than disclosed government figures, citing the dramatic spike in pork prices in China this year as evidence. A China−based adviser to the Food and Agriculture Organization, Guo Fusheng, told Agence France−Presse that the official tally of infected pigs was probably not accurate. Source: http://www.forbes.com/markets/feeds/afx/2007/08/20/afx403789 9.html

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    August 17, CanWest News Service (Canada) Lake algae kills livestock. Livestock are dying by the dozens southwest of Saskatoon, Canada, because of blue−green algae flourishing in the water. Ranchers in the Wiseton and Dinsmore area are scrambling to deal with the problem. Ivan Thomson said about 40 of his bison have died from drinking contaminated water, with the first fatality occurring about two weeks ago. It's primarily the breeding bulls and the heavier milking females that are dying, he said. "They're more active, so their systems require more moisture. Thomson has moved his livestock to different pastures, but the blue−green algae keep popping up. Some of his bison have died within 30 minutes of ingesting the water −− while others have lived nearly two days after, he said. The blue−green algae have been found in lakes in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec. Source: http://www.canada.com/edmontonjournal/news/story.html?id=35a 32c8e−f7da−46e5−abbf−1c216272ec8a

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Food Sector

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    August 21, Houston Chronicle Houston's ethnic food stores monitored for safety. Federal food police in Houston are used to confiscating bizarre concoctions. In the past year they've seized earthworms from China and untreated lentils from India. And they're still talking about the 2,000 pounds of duck and chicken feet illegally shipped to Houston from Vietnam. As the immigrant community in Houston continues to expand, so does the number of local ethnic markets where exotic −− and sometimes contaminated or untreated −− food products are sold, authorities say. Tom Baker, who supervises Houston inspectors assigned to a component of the

    • U.

      S. Department of Agriculture, said his agents monitor more than 1,000 ethnic markets in Houston and surrounding counties, where merchants from Asia, Latin America, Africa, the


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