An outbreak of avian influenza in breeding was highlighted in a poultry farm in the North, we learned on Saturday, November 27. This is the first since the epizootic last winter, when poultry raised in the open air have been confined again since the beginning of November.
“While avian influenza viruses are actively circulating in Europe via migratory birds, France detected on November 26 an outbreak due to a highly pathogenic strain in a laying hen farm located in the town of Warhem, in the Nord department “, said the Ministry of Agriculture in a press release. This is the H5N1 virus, specifies the minister’s office questioned by Agence France-Presse. The suspicion of infection follows a finding of abnormal mortalities among poultry on the farm.
France thus loses its “free” status from avian influenza, stressed the Ministry of Agriculture, which may have consequences on the export outlets for its poultry. “Steps have been taken via the embassies to reassure the main importing countries of the sporadic nature at this stage of this event and the implementation of the usual management measures as provided for by European Union regulations”, added the cabinet of the Minister of Agriculture, Julien Denormandie.
Since the end of the summer, France had reported four cases of bird flu in wildlife and three cases in low-lying areas in the metropolitan area. In Europe, 26 countries are currently affected by influenza viruses, affecting more than 400 breeding homes and 600 wildlife cases, the ministry said.
Sanitary measures have been taken. The hens will be slaughtered and the home will be disinfected. A protection zone (3 kilometers around the outbreak) and a surveillance zone (10 kilometers) have been set up by the prefect. To avoid the risk of spreading the virus, the movement of poultry is prohibited in these areas where strict sanitary measures must be observed.
A prefectural decree “Suspending the hunting of waterfowl and feathers” up to ” new order “ in the territories of the communes located within a radius of 10 kilometers around the breeding was also taken. “The consumption of meat, foie gras and eggs – and more generally any poultry-based food product – does not present any risk for humans “, however, the ministry said.
The level of risk relating to avian influenza has increased to ” raised “ in mainland France, according to a decree published on November 5 in the Official newspaper. The government hopes to prevent the episode of winter 2020 from repeating itself, when bird flu quickly spread to farms in the South-West after the passage of migratory birds carrying the virus.