CALGARY, Alberta – The Canadian Cattlemen's Association announced it will submit paperwork to Health Canada to reactivate the process for approving beef irradiation in Canada.

The group first submitted the petition in 1998, but final steps were not completed.

"The recent support of irradiation by the Consumers Association of Canada indicates that the benefits of this technology are starting to be recognized," CCA said in its Action News publication. Support from the industry, government, the scientific community and the medical profession will be required to support consumer education initiatives.

"The arguments advanced by opponents of irradiation today are almost identical to those used at the start of the last century against milk pasteurization. The benefits of pasteurization and irradiation are also similar to the extent that some have advocated that the term ‘cold pasteurized’ be used instead of the term ‘irradiated’ on packaging."

Canada does allow irradiation of some products, including potatoes, onions, wheat, flour, whole wheat flour; and whole or ground spices and dehydrated seasonings.