Health officials said today [Thursday] that New Zealand may have its first case of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD).

The disease is caused by eating meat infected with bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE). There has never been an incidence of either CJD or BSE in New Zealand.

The case involves a 26-year-old male farm worker, who is undergoing thorough tests, reported Reuters.