November 11, 2016
EU calls for vigilance after bird flu hits Hungary
The European Commission has called on the EU member states and the poultry sector in the 28-nation bloc to be vigilant and to step up of biosecurity on poultry farms, following confirmation on Nov. 4 of the highly pathogenic avian influenza of subtype H5N8 on a turkey fattening farm in Tótkomlós, Békés County, Hungary.
Hungarian authorities have applied control measures as laid down in EU legislation, according to an EC press release.
"This outbreak is caused by the same strain of Asian origin detected in a wild bird in the same area the week before. This and other outbreaks throughout the EU mark the seasonal circulation of avian influenza viruses", the EC said.
The standing committee on plants, animals, food and feed (PAFF) met on Monday, Nov. 7, during which the protective measures to respond to the outbreak in the affected areas were reviewed and adopted.
During the meeting, the EC also presented an update of EU control measures to combat the spread of African swine fever (ASF) in Latvia, Lithuania and Poland.
The new measures consider the positive evolution of the situation in the domestic pig sector in Latvia and Lithuania, thus lifting some of the existing restrictions on pig farming. At the same time, new ASF cases were registered in wild boar in Latvia and Poland, leading to an adjustment of the restricted areas in these two countries.
The EC emphasised the importance of higher biosecurity in pig farms and the need for targeted depopulation measures for wild boars.