State of Maine Standard Operating Procedure on Non-Negative Tuberculosis Screen Tests

Tuberculosis transmission from cattle to humans was once common in the United States, but human infections have been greatly reduced by decades of disease control in cattle herds and by routine pasteurization of cow’s milk. In recent history, most human infection in the US are caused M. bovis are due to the consumption of unpasteurized infected dairy products.

Maine allows the sale of both pasteurized and unpasteurized, raw, milk products. This means that there is an elevated risk of M. bovis being spread to the public if it was ever reintroduced into our dairy herds. Due to this risk it is necessary to create a scientifically based standard operating procedure (SOP) for animals that are found to be suspect animals on screening TB tests.

Attached is the standard operating procedures (SOP) we use regarding Raw Milk Producers and Tuberculosis testing. There is also an associated letter that we will be giving to the raw milk producers when they have a non-negative TB test. This SOP is not a new policy it merely puts the previous precedent into writing. Though, this is the first time we will be formally informing the producers of the risks.

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions on these documents or TB testing in general at 207.592.6698 or Justin G. Bergeron, BVMS, MPH, Assistant State Veterinarian, NPIP Coordinator, Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation & Forestry Augusta, Maine.