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first_world

45 Japan Cows Suspected of Having Mad Cow

Forty-five cows at a farm in northern Japan are suspected of having mad cow disease and will be destroyed, officials said Thursday. The cows are from a farm on the northern island of Hokkaido where a cow died last month of the disease — Japan's 22nd mad cow case. Following the death, the Hokkaido government banned the farm from moving any of its more than 400 cows, said Osamu Terada, an official with Hokkaido prefecture.

The dead cow was not raised for food and posed no danger to the country's beef supply, officials said. The cows to be destroyed include 43 adults and two calves — the offspring of the cow that died in January, the Hokkaido prefecture said in a statement. The announcement came a month after Japan halted all imports of U.S. beef following the discovery of backbones in a shipment of American veal. The bones are deemed to be at risk of mad cow disease and are banned under a deal that reopened the Japanese market to U.S. beef in December.

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