A final ruling that eases beef import rules with regard to bovine spongiform encephalopathy, or mad cow disease, was issued Friday by the USDA. The USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service said the new regulation will align U.S. rules with global standards that use scientifically perceived risk of diseased animal products or animals as basis of trade policies. Some beef import restrictions will be removed under the new rule based on countries with insignificant BSE risk. "[W]e are hopeful it will help open new markets and remove remaining restrictions on U.S. cattle and cattle products," the USDA wrote in a fact sheet.
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