News update:Mar 9, 2016

UPDATED: Dutch authorities finalise culling of 150,000 poultry

While elsewhere in the Netherlands another outbreak of avian influenza has been discovered, the Dutch authorities have finalised the culling of a 150,000 head layer farm which was found infected last weekend.

The culling of the 150,000 birds was finalised this Tuesday. The Netherlands Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority (NVWA) then cleaned and disinfected the facility, after which all buildings will have to remain closed for two weeks. Next steps will involve a cleaning round by the owner, another seven-day closure and anohter cleaning and disinfection round by the NVWA. From that date 30 days onwards, the facilities can be used again.

The quick response to the HPAI infection has led to praise for the poultry farm owner by his peers.

The new outbreak was found in Ter Aar, about 30 km south of Amsterdam and at about 20 north west of the first outbreak, and causes all other biosecurity regulations to be put back in place, like e.g. a standstill for poultry, eggs, manure and bedding. Initially, the ministry stated that having even sampled contact farms, nowhere any additional traces of the virus could be found. For this reason, the nationwide transport standstill had been lifted - which was considered just in time to avoid empty shelves in supermarkets.

A search by experts of the Netherlands ministry of Economic Affairs in a 10 km radius around the farm in Hekendorp, did not yield any further infections. The strain in the first farm is the same as also found in the UK and Germany, earlier this month, of the type H5N8.

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