Home to the world's largest cattle population, Brazil produces beef at a low cost and has been able to significantly boost its exports recently, after the emergence of mad cow disease across Europe led many countries to ban meat from the EU. Beef producers are now worried however that increasing fears in Europe over the spread of foot and mouth disease will jeopardise their export market. Brazil has a long history of the disease and EU countries anxious to reduce chances of importing new strains of the virus are expected to seek beef imports from elsewhere.