Tuesday

18th Jun 2019

EU to take measures after bird flu outbreak in Netherlands

The European Commission is expected to take measures on Monday (17 November) to contain an outbreak of bird flu in the Netherlands.

A commission spokesperson told Reuters that the EU's governing body will probably adopt “a decision with urgent interim protective measures in relation to this outbreak”.

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  • Some 150,000 Dutch chickens will be killed following an outbreak of bird flu (Photo: Notat)

The statement comes after Dutch authorities on Saturday discovered an outbreak of bird flu at a poultry farm in Hekendorp, a town between Rotterdam and Utrecht.

Later it was confirmed the animals were infected with type H5N8 of the bird flu, which is highly contagious among birds and lethal for chickens. The flu can be transmitted to humans if they come in close contact with infected animals.

Type H5N8 was also discovered at a turkey farm in Germany earlier this month.

The British Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on Monday announced that it had also discovered a highly pathogenic type of bird flu, but it is unclear if it is also H5N8.

The outbreak was discovered at a duck breeding farm east of Yorkshire in England on Sunday.

A restriction zone of 10 kilometres has been put around the affected areas - required by EU law - in both the UK and the Netherlands.

The Dutch Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority have started killing the 150,000 animals at the infected farm.

As of Sunday morning, all poultry in the Netherlands has to be indoors or shielded, and cannot be transported. Other birds as well as eggs and poultry manure is also forbidden from being transported. If a farm has both poultry and dairy cows, milk from the farm cannot leave the premises.

There are 16 other poultry farms being investigated within the 10 kilometre zone in the Netherlands.

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