“Canada, U.S. and Mexico agree to import standards related to mad cow,” Canadian Press, 30 March 2005, http://www.canada.com/news/national/story.html?id=d1aaf8ef-ca9e-4cf4-ac5f-87b5820abe1d (from Democratic Underground).
The economies of South Dakota and North America are helped by this bit of integration
Canada, the United States and Mexico have agreed to a single North American import standard related to mad cow disease, Federal Agriculture Minister Andy Mitchell said Tuesday.
The standard, negotiated at a recent meeting in Mexico City, reflects guidelines laid out by the World Organization for Animal Health. It says that, as long as the materials most likely to cause mad cow disease are being removed from the animal at slaughter, and as long as animals are not being imported from herds where the disease has been found, then it should be safe for animals to move across borders.
“It’s a very important agreement between the three countries,” Mitchell said.
“You can trade cattle between countries so long as you take certain steps and we are please that we have all three countries on side.”
Another good part of the agreement is that it keeps up momentum for further harmonization. The almost insignificant opening up of Mexico to Canadian cattle is important because it gets both Mexicans and Canadians thinking more in North American terms.
With the new standard, Mexico has indicated that it will begin a regulatory process that will eventually lead to the opening of its border to live Canadian cattle. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency estimates that will begin within three or four months.
And the South Dakota angle. They won’t be keeping our cows out any longer. Hurrah for Sodak farmers!
Canada will also re-open its borders to American cattle. Mitchell said that will take effect Thursday.
“It certainly indicates that Canada believes in the scientific approach,” Mitchell said.