The National Cattlemen's Beef Association (NCBA) has produced an informational document on Foot-and-Mouth Disease (FMD) and Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) to give producers a better understanding of these foreign animal diseases.

Called "FMD & BSE: What Every Producer Needs to Know," the insert has information on what's being done to keep FMD out of the U.S., and what producers can do to help prevent the disease. It also contains frequently asked questions about FMD, as well as facts about the government's emergency response and compensation plans.

Two pages also are devoted to what steps the U.S. is taking to remain BSE-free, and a discussion on new variant CJD, the human disease that has been linked to BSE.

More than a million copies of the document will be distributed across the country, thanks to funding from the beef checkoff through the Cattlemen's Beef Board and NCBA through its dues-paying members. Additional sponsorship funding was provided by Pfizer Animal Health.

More than 75 state and national organizations and publications have contributed resources to help distribute the 8-page insert. It is appearing in May, June or July editions of many publications, while cattlemen's associations and beef councils are also distributing the document to producers in their states.

This producer information tool was reviewed by USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service staff, as well as leading industry veterinarians.

An electronic file of the insert is available on the beef industry's Web site, www.beef.org. Additional individual copies of the document also are available by writing to: FMD/BSE Insert, NCBA, 5420 S. Quebec Street, Greenwood Village, CO 80111.

The national beef checkoff, which helped fund this project, is administered by the Cattlemen's Beef Promotion and Research Board. It was managed for the Beef Board and state beef councils by NCBA. The Beef Board is a 110-member board appointed by the Secretary of Agriculture to oversee the collection of the $1-per-head checkoff, certify state beef councils, implement the provisions of the Federal Order establishing the checkoff and evaluate the effectiveness of checkoff programs.

Producer-directed and consumer-focused, NCBA is the trade association of America's cattle farmers and ranchers, and the marketing organization for the largest segment of the nation's food and fiber industry.

National Cattlemen's Beef Association