The Department of Agriculture (DA) has ordered a temporary ban on the importation of domestic and wild birds and their products from Poland to prevent the entry of H5N8 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) virus in the Philippines.
In a statement sent to Palawan News, the DA said it issued Memorandum Order No. 05, Series of 2020, to ban poultry meat, day-old chicks, eggs, and semen originating from Poland to protect the health of the local poultry population.
The DA said this is because according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDCP), HPAI occurs mainly in birds, highly contagious among birds, and can be deadly, especially in domestic poultry.
“There is a need to prevent the entry of HPAI virus to protect the health of the local poultry population,” DA Sec. William Dar stated in the order on January 21.
Measures mentioned are the immediate suspension of the processing, evaluation of the application and issuance of Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) import clearance to the mentioned commodities.
He also said the stoppage and confiscation of all shipments of the stated commodities (with the exception of heat-treated products) into the country by all DA veterinary quarantine officers or inspectors at all major ports of entry.
Frozen poultry meat with slaughter or 21 process days prior to the HPAI outbreaks are allowed to enter the country subject to veterinary quarantine rules and regulations.
The importation of meat products of poultry is subject to the conditions provided in Article 10.4.19, 10.4.20 and 10.4.26 of OIE Terrestrial Animal Health Code (2019).
As cited on the official report submitted General Veterinary Inspectorate, Ministry of Agriculture and Development of Warzaw, Poland to the World Organisation (WHO) for Animal Health on January 2, one outbreak of H5N8 HPAI was recorded affecting turkeys on December 30, 2019, in Uscimow, Lubartowski, Lubelskie region.
“Based on the official report submitted by Dr. Bogdan Konopka, Chief Veterinary Officer, General Veterinary Inspectorate, Ministry of Agriculture and Development, Warszaw, Poland to the World Organisation for Animal Health on 2 January 2020, there was one (1) outbreak of H5N8 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) in Uscimow, Lubartowski, Lubelskie Region affecting turkeys on December 30, 2019,” Dar’s memo said.
The report was confirmed by the National Veterinary Research Institute (NVRI) in Pulawy, Poland.