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Health and Consumer Protection

Press releases

Brussels, 18 April 2001

FMD: Results of the Standing Veterinary Committee

The Standing Veterinary Committee (SVC) today voted in favour of a Commission proposal to allow, under certain conditions, the consignment of fresh meat and meat products, milk and milk products and other animal products from animals susceptible to foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) from the southern and western parts of the Netherlands. The dispatch of live susceptible animals from anywhere in the Netherlands and the consignment of products from the other parts of the country continue to be prohibited unless these products are treated appropriately. The Committee also gave a favourable opinion on a proposal to extend the protective measures in Northern Ireland.

The Netherlands: Partial lifting of restrictions in the south and the west of the country

The outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in the Netherlands are concentrated in two areas: One around Oene and the second in Friesland. No outbreaks have been confirmed and no suspected cases have been reported in the southern and western parts of the country.

The Commission therefore proposed to allow the dispatch, under certain conditions, of fresh meat and meat products, milk and milk products and other animal products from the susceptible species from the area south of the river Rijn-Waal-Merwede and west of the highway A-27. This was based on the undertaking of the Dutch authorities to put in place firm control on animal movements into the regions concerned and to resolve the animal welfare problems arising from the present restrictions.

Different conditions have to be respected to allow the implementation of the decision:

  • the Netherlands will control continuously the traffic crossing from the restricted areas to the other areas,
  • in slaughterhouses a clinical inspection for symptoms of FMD will take place, including temperature control,
  • no meat shall leave a slaughterhouse within 24 hours after slaughter

It is however still prohibited:

  • to move live susceptible animals (bovine, ovine, caprine and porcine species and other biungulates) and their germinal products from anywhere in the Netherlands to other Member States and third countries;
  • to dispatch to other parts of the country, to other Member States and to third countries of products, notably fresh meat and meat products, milk and milk products, hides and skins and other animal products from the FMD-susceptible species from the provinces of Groningen, Friesland, Drenthe, Flevoland, Overijssel, the areas in the province of Gelderland situated north of the river Rijn-Waal-Merwede between the border with Germany and the border with the province Zuid-Holland and the areas in the province of Utrecht east of the highway A-27.

The Commission is due to adopt this decision on Monday 23 April, under condition that no outbreaks of FMD are confirmed in another area in the Netherlands.

Northern Ireland: extension of protective measures

After the confirmation of two new outbreaks of FMD in Northern Ireland, the Commission has adopted a decision, after advice of the SVC, to reintroduce Northern Ireland in the scope of the measures applicable in the other parts of the United Kingdom.The measures now in place in the entire United Kingdom are: The prohibition to export from the United Kingdom live susceptible animals, fresh meat and meat products, milk and milk products and other animal products from those species, unless these products are treated appropriately against the virus.

Commission decision on movement restrictions regarding pastures

The Commission today formally adopted an amendment to the decision on the EU-wide restrictions to the movement of animals of FMD susceptible species. The amendment allows herds to be brought from farms to pastures e.g. in mountains (like the "Almauftrieb" in the Alps).

The next meeting of the Standing Veterinary Committee is scheduled for wednesday 25 April 2001.

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FOOD SAFETY | PUBLIC HEALTH | CONSUMER PROTECTION | DIRECTORATE GENERAL "HEALTH & CONSUMER PROTECTION"

 
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