Namibia bans poultry from Germany, Netherlands

November 01, 2021

The Ministry of Agriculture has announced the immediate suspension of imports and in-transit movement of live poultry, birds and poultry products from Germany and the Netherlands following the outbreak of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza.

“Since the incubation period of the disease is 21 days as set by the World Health Organization for Animal Health (OIHE), fir the suspension takes 21 days prior to the date of start of the event,” Ministry of Agriculture Chief Veterinary Officer, Dr Albertina Shilongo said.

She said consignments of poultry products destined for Namibia packed in their final packaging on or after the start of the suspension will be rejected and sent back to their country of origin or destroyed at the importers cost.

“All previously issued import and in transit permits are hereby cancelled and recalled with immediate effect. Cooked poultry products for commercial purposes may still be imported into Namibia under the veterinary import permits,” Shilongo said.

Namibia has also banned all imports of poultry and poultry products from South Africa in March after further outbreaks of avian influenza were detected in the neighbouring country.

What is the Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza?

The Asian highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) A(H5N1) virus occurs mainly in birds and is highly contagious among them.

HPAI Asian H5N1 is especially deadly for poultry. The virus was first detected in 1996 in geese in China and humans in 1997 during a poultry outbreak in Hong Kong and has since been detected in poultry and wild birds in more than 50 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East.

Six countries are considered to be endemic for Asian HPAI H5N1 virus in poultry (Bangladesh, China, Egypt, India, Indonesia, and Vietnam).

The risk to humans from the disease is considered low, but previous outbreaks among farm birds have resulted in extensive slaughtering programmes to contain the spread.

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Last modified on Tuesday, 02 November 2021 17:06

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