The Department of Agriculture (DA) has issued a temporary ban on the importation of domestic and wild birds from the United Kingdom and Japan following an outbreak of a strain of avian influenza in two countries.

According to a memorandum released by the DA, the temporary ban covers the importation of domestic and wild birds and their products including poultry meat, day-old chicks, eggs, and semen originating from Mitoyo City, Kagawa in Japan and Frodsham, England in the United Kingdom.

Based on an official report submitted to the World Organization for Animal Health, an outbreak of H5N8 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) virus was confirmed affecting broilers on November 4 in Mitoyo City.

The same case was also reported by the chief veterinary officer in Frodsham, England affecting broiler breeder rearing birds on November 2.

DA secretary William Dar ordered the immediate suspension of processing and evaluation of application as well as the issuance of Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) import clearance for the said commodities.

Dar added that “all incoming poultry meat shipments with SPS import clearance issued on or before November 9, 2020, will be allowed provided that frozen poultry meat has a slaughter/ process date of 21 days prior to the start of the HPAI outbreak (on or before October 3, 2020).”

All shipments will be subject to veterinary quarantine rules and regulations.