February 8, 2011
Members of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association’s (NCBA) Cattle Health and Well-Being Policy Committee met yesterday, Feb. 5, 2011, during the Cattle Industry Convention and NCBA Trade Show. Tom Talbot, committee chairman, said the committee’s objective is to provide guidance and develop policy to ensure cattle health and well-being issues are addressed in an efficient and effective manner to maintain the health and quality care of cattle; and to provide consumers consistent, high quality, safe and wholesome beef.
Dr. Guy Longeragan from Texas Tech University gave an update on the current state of the science regarding pre-harvest tools. These potential tools include vaccines, products that can be fed and products that can be applied to the cattle. He discussed the pros and cons of all three categories of pre-harvest tools, including the promising results from E. Coli vaccines currently marketed in North America. However, Longeragan noted not only these vaccines but also any of the other pre-harvest interventions should not to be viewed as the silver bullet. He said we need to know much more about all of these potential food safety tools and their efficacy.