July 7, 2008


Philippines temporarily bans poultry from Arkansas, UK, Haiti


The Philippines has momentarily blocked poultry imports, including poultry meat, day-old chicks, eggs and wild birds, from the UK, Haiti and Arkansas, US, following the detection of bird flu in their farms.


A low pathogenic bird flu (serotype H7N3) has been detected in a poultry farm in Arkansas which affected broiler chickens.


Manila's ban on poultry and wild birds from Haiti was imposed following the discovery of low pathogenic bird flu (serotype H5N2) in Centre, Carca La source; Nord, Cap Haitian and Sud, Miragoane in Haiti affecting poultry for human consumption, backyard poultry, turkey and fighting cocks.


The government has re-imposed the embargo on poultry products and wild birds from the UK as highly pathogenic bird flu type H7N7 was discovered in laying poultry farm in Shenington, Oxfordshire, England. The ban on UK poultry was lifted on October 10, 2007.


Agriculture Secretary Arthur Yap said the momentary ban is needed "to prevent the entry of bird flu virus to protect the health of the local poultry population."


The Philippines imports live poultry and its products from the UK. The US is also a major source of poultry products from the Philippines, specifically chicken-leg quarters.


While the country does not import chicken products from Haiti, Yap said the temporary ban needs to be imposed to ensure that travellers will not bring in pet birds and other wild birds from the country.


With the temporary ban in place, the Bureau of Animal industry will no longer process, evaluate and issue Veterinary Quarantine Clearances (VQCs) to importers who wish to source their products from the three areas.


The Philippines is among three Asian countries that have not contracted the dreaded bird flu virus. To ensure that the bird flu virus will not enter the country and infect the local poultry population, the government imposes a temporary ban on countries where the bird flu was reported.

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