Statement by Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns Regarding the Sample Sent to Weybridge, England for Further Testing

June 16, 2005

"We find ourselves in a situation where we have two internationally accepted tests that have produced conflicting results. I believe in this situation we have an obligation to be thorough. We've consulted with our top scientists at USDA and with internationally recognized experts to determine our best course in this unique case. We have agreed upon a protocol that includes additional testing both here at USDA and at an international reference laboratory in Weybridge, England. When we have all of the final results we will share them very publicly.

"We know there is absolutely no risk to animal or human health related to this case. Our safeguards worked exactly as they were designed to work.

Because they worked, we now have the opportunity to learn more about this sample, knowing it could advance the science behind our testing efforts."