The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) removed movement restrictions on 7,700 cattle located on 83 farms in Ontario and four farms in Quebec this week after determining they were not exposed to potentially contaminated feed. An estimated 2,450 cattle on 26 farms in Quebec remain under movement restrictions, most of which are said to be mature dairy cattle.

CFIA imposed the restrictions Nov. 18 after a load of cattle feed ingredient suspected of containing meat and bone meal reportedly was distributed to two feed mills in Ontario and Quebec. Feed was then distributed to 113 farms.

As a precaution, all potentially exposed animals were placed under movement control. An investigation showed the feed ingredient delivered to the mill in Ontario did not contain any of the potentially contaminated material. Further analysis is ongoing, CFIA says.

In addition, reports CFIA has given conditional approval to an E. coli O157:H7 cattle vaccine to be distributed to Canadian veterinarians. Developed by Ontario-based Bioniche Life Sciences (BLS) Inc., the firm says it's the first vaccine technology for E. coli O157:H7 control to be authorized for field use by a regulator globally.

To garner a full license, BLS must provide additional confirmatory data, which it believes it can meet in 2007.
-- Joe Roybal