~ removing specified risk materials (SRMs) from all animal feed, including pet food, to control the possibility of cross contamination throughout feed manufacture and distribution and on the farm due to misfeeding;
~ requiring dedicated equipment or facilities for handling and storing feed and ingredients during manufacturing and transportation;
~ prohibiting the use of all mammalian and poultry protein in ruminant feed, as well as prohibiting materials from non-ambulatory disabled cattle and dead stock from use in all animal feed.
"The series of firewalls already in place offer excellent protection against BSE," said Acting Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, Dr. Lester M. Crawford. "With these additional measures, we will make a strong system even stronger by putting into effect the most comprehensive, science-based improvements possible."
AFIA says it agrees wholeheartedly with the Food and Drug Administration’s assertion that existing BSE protection measures already offer excellent safeguards but cautions the agency against rushing to judgment or overregulating this issue. "AFIA is pleased that the agency is requesting more science-based information on its proposals; yet we are concerned over its intention of tentatively proposing the banning of all SRMs in feed. The latter would have serious consequences for the industry as well as pose a tremendous environmental challenge for the nation".
AFIA says it encourages FDA to employ all caution in reviewing input to its proposals and consider fully all serious and reasonable comments. FDA’s ANPRM is 52 pages and contains 20 questions. It will be published in the Federal Register on July 14. The agency has indicated that it will release a proposed rule later this summer based on comments received to the advance notice.
AFIA is also requesting an additional 60-days to the comment period due to the magnitude of the information being requested. The extension is crucial to accommodating more meaningful responses and providing accurate environmental data. AFIA will provide a more detailed review of the rule this week and schedule an industry-wide webcast shortly thereafter.