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Philippines Keep an Eye on Bird Flu

16 June 2008

PHILIPPINES - President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has directed the Department of Agriculture to strengthen the measures to protect human health and the country's P60-billion poultry industry from the bird flu virus (AI).

The country has remained free of bird flu ever since the H5NI strain of this virus resurfaced in Asia in 2003," she pointed out. "I have directed the DA to remain vigilant in monitoring the entry and importation of poultry, particularly from countries with reported incidents of bird flu," the President said.

The Department of Agriculture (DA) has recently slapped a temporary ban on all imports of domestic and wild birds, along with poultry and its products from Denmark, following the reports of (AI) or bird flu virus in that country.

Agriculture Secretary Arthur Yap said the ban covers all "domestic and wild birds and their products, including day-old chicks, eggs and semen."

He issued the ban after the Office of International des Epizooties (OIE) or the Animal Health Organization confirmed that low pathogenic AI has been detected in a poultry farm in Stenstrup, Svendborg Kommune, South in Denmark which affected geese, chickens, ducks and mallards.

Yap directed DA quarantine officers and inspectors at all major airports and seaports to stop and confiscate all incoming shipments of live birds, poultry and poultry products coming from Denmark.

Yap also ordered the immediate suspension of the issuance of Veterinary Quarantine clearance (VQCs) to all imports covering these products from Denmark.

Besides Denmark, the Philippines also currently bans imports of birds, poultry and its products from among others, Korea, Saudi Arabia, Poland and the western African country of Benin, to protect human health and the poultry industry in the Philippines.

ThePoultrySite News Desk



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