The Department of Agriculture (DA) has issued the temporary ban on the importation of domesticated and wild birds and their products including poultry meat, day-old chicks, eggs and semen from Nebraska, USA.
Under Memorandum Order No.33-15, Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala ordered a temporary ban based on a report submitted by Dr. John Clifford, deputy administrator of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) to the Office of Internationale Des Epizooties (OIE) that there has been an outbreak of the Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) virus in Dixon County, Dixon, Nebraska, USA.
The outbreak of HPAI serotype H5N2 has affected the commercial chicken layer flock in Dixon Country, and this was confirmed by the USDA APHIS National Veterinary Services Laboratories.
In line with this, Alcala ordered the immediate suspension of the processing, evaluation of the application and issuance of Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) import clearances on the importation of poultry products from the affected US territory.
In addition, Alcala instructed the DA’s veterinary quarantine officers and inspectors at all major ports to stop and confiscate all shipments of poultry and poultry products (with the exception on heat treated products) from Dixon County in Nebraska.
The Philippines, to this day, remains free from the highly pathogenic avian influenza or bird flu.
Thus, the DA chief stressed that the ban and other emergency measures were necessary to protect human health and the poultry industry in the country.
“We have been closely monitoring advisories from the OIE since we want to proactively protect the integrity of our poultry products as avian flu-free,” Alcala said.
The OIE is an inter-governmental organization that, among others, has functions of informing governments of the occurrence of animal diseases and of ways to control these diseases, of coordinating studies devoted to the surveillance and control of animal diseases and of harmonizing regulations to facilitate trade in animals and animal products. (Solita Onquit/DA-OSEC)
Posted By: Lynne Pingoy