Filthy vessels: milk safety and attempts to restrict the spread of bovine tuberculosis in Queensland

Article


Colclough, Gillian. 2010. "Filthy vessels: milk safety and attempts to restrict the spread of bovine tuberculosis in Queensland." Health and History. 12 (1), pp. 6-26. https://doi.org/10.5401/healthhist.12.1.0006
Article Title

Filthy vessels: milk safety and attempts to restrict the spread of bovine tuberculosis in Queensland

ERA Journal ID11321
Article CategoryArticle
Authors
AuthorColclough, Gillian
Journal TitleHealth and History
Journal Citation12 (1), pp. 6-26
Number of Pages21
Year2010
PublisherAustralian and New Zealand Society of the History of Medicine
Place of PublicationMelbourne, Australia
ISSN1442-1771
1839-3314
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.5401/healthhist.12.1.0006
Web Address (URL)http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.5401/healthhist.12.1.0006
Abstract

Bovine tuberculosis is a dangerous mycobacterium that can be conveyed to humans in the meat and milk of cattle. By the mid-1800s, when health scientists began arguing about its zoonotic potential and danger to humans, the disease was well established in Australian cattle herds. This article examines the Queensland response to bovine tuberculosis from the late 1800s to the 1940s, when the problem of tubercular cattle could no longer be ignored. It shows that despite widespread concern about milk safety and increasing knowledge of the disease's aetiology, the Queensland government directed its milk safety activities towards public health education rather than the inadequacies of the dairy industry's approach to bovine tuberculosis. As such, it was tardy in addressing bovine tuberculosis.

Keywordsbovine tuberculosis; public health
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020300399. Animal production not elsewhere classified
420603. Health promotion
420399. Health services and systems not elsewhere classified
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Byline AffiliationsLearning and Teaching Support Unit
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
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