In order to identify the management and feeding practices that might have contributed to the occurrence of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in Bavaria, Germany, information from 110 dairy farms on which a case of BSE had been reported was compared with information derived from a questionnaire sent to approximately 10,000 Bavarian farms on which no case of BSE had been reported up to February 2003. Representative information was obtained from 4006 dairy farms. The results indicated that in comparison with these control farms a higher proportion of the BSE farms had also kept pigs or poultry, although the difference was not significant, and that a significantly higher proportion of the BSE farms had fed proprietary concentrates and/or milk replacers to their calves.
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