‘Highly pathogenic’ case of bird flu confirmed in France

A case of avian influenza also known as bird flu has been confirmed in Dordogne, France following an abnormal death, according to the French ministry of agriculture.

It has stated that samples have been taken for analysis by the Departmental Directorate of Protecting Populations.

The confirmation of the bird flu case was established Tuesday evening (November 24) by the National Agency Risk Assessment (ANSES) and a strain of the virus was identified.

This is a highly pathogenic H5N1 in poultry, the ministry has announced.

The sequencing of the strain is underway but it seems to be of a strain already detected in Europe, it states.

Stéphane le Foll, the French minister of agriculture, food and forestry, immediately instructed services to enable the national health emergency response plan to the case of bird flu in accordance with European and international rules.

A protection zone of 3km and a surveillance zone of 10km have been put in place and monitoring will be strengthened not only in farming but also in wildlife, the ministry stated.

Measures of protection and management against bird flu are to be applied and the ministry has stated that the speed of the implementation of management measures is a prerequisite to limit the spread and consequences of disease, especially for export.

Furthermore, it should be recalled that avian influenza is not transmissible to humans through the consumption of meat, eggs, foie gras and more generally any food product, the ministry stated.

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