All of France placed on ‘high risk’ re­stric­tions over bird flu

Kuwait Times - - HEALTH & SCIENCE -

France widened “high risk” re­stric­tions to the en­tire coun­try af­ter the de­tec­tion of sev­eral cases of the highly path­o­genic H5N8 avian flu strain in farms in south­west France and in wild ducks in north­ern France, the farm min­istry said on Tues­day.

The de­ci­sion was also mo­ti­vated by the “rapid change in the ... sit­u­a­tion in France and in sev­eral Euro­pean coun­tries”, the state­ment said. The min­istry had al­ready im­posed tighter re­stric­tions on sev­eral zones mostly lo­cated in hu­mid ar­eas last month in an ef­fort to avoid con­tam­i­na­tion. But France, which has the largest poul­try flock in the Euro­pean Union, has since been hit by sev­eral out­breaks, in a set­back for French poul­try and foie gras pro­duc­ers still reel­ing from a bird flu epi­demic that started a year ago. Poul­try farm­ers will have to keep their flocks in­doors or ap­ply safety nets pre­vent­ing con­tact with wild birds, it said.

Those who may not use con­fine­ment or safety nets be­cause of an­i­mal wel­fare or qual­ity re­quire­ments can ask to be ex­empted if they can prove suf­fi­cient biose­cu­rity mea­sures.

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