Belarus imposes poultry ban on Netherlands

By Vladislav Vorotnikov

- Last updated on GMT

Belarus imposes poultry ban on Netherlands

Related tags Avian influenza Influenza vaccine International trade Livestock Poultry

Belarus has banned poultry imports from the Netherlands due to reports of avian influenza (H7N7), implementing the same restrictions on the country as those in Russia and Kazakhstan.

The ban was placed in accordance with current trade agreements between the members of the Customs Union, authorities claimed.

A statement from the Department of Veterinary and Food Supervision under the Ministry of Agriculture of Belarus said: “According to Russian veterinary watchdog Rosselkhoznadzor, the Netherlands (the provinces of Gelderland and Flevoland) reported cases of low pathogenic avian influenza (H7N7).

"Hence, since 18 April, Belarus has imposed temporary restrictions on imports of live poultry, hatching eggs, feathers, poultry meat and all types of poultry products, as well as feed and feed ingredients of poultry and equipment used for content, slaughtering and butchering of birds."

Growing problem

Last week, the chief veterinarian of Russia Gennady Onishchenko said that bird flu was not present on poultry in Russia. The representatives of the Russian state sanitary service Rospotrebnadzor also added that the veterinary authorities of the Customs Union “were ready to adopt any trade restrictions to protect consumers from bird flu, which is becoming a global problem”.

Meanwhile, scientists claimed international action to control and prevention of avian influenza was insufficient.

Dr Daria Goloburdina, a member of the Russian Epidemiology Association, said: “International health agencies should intensify efforts towards finding new vaccines against bird flu. It is obvious that, recently, the disease has become extremely widespread – with outbreaks during the last half year reported in Mexico, Europe and now China.

"Direct losses from the death of birds, as well as trade restrictions against countries that allow such outbreaks, result in serious damage to the businesses concerned, not to mention the fact that it poses a very serious threat to human health.

"As such, work and investments to tackle this situation are justified.”

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