UPDATE: Namibia bans poultry from SA and Zim

27 Jun 2017 11:40am
WINDHOEK, 27 JUN (NAMPA) – The Directorate of Veterinary Services (DVS) has suspended the import of poultry and poultry products from South Africa and Belgium with immediate effect.
The banned products include live poultry; poultry products; any birds, including ostriches and ostrich products.
This comes after a reported outbreak of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) in the two countries and recently in Zimbabwe.
A statement issued on Tuesday quotes Chief Veterinary Officer, Dr Milton Maseke as saying cooked poultry meat products from South Africa for commercial purposes will still be allowed in Namibia under the revised veterinary import permit.
HPAI is a disease caused by avian (bird) influenza (flu) Type A viruses.
“These viruses occur naturally among wild aquatic birds worldwide and can infect domestic poultry and other bird and animal species,” said Maseke, adding the viruses do not normally infect humans but sporadic human infections with avian flu have occurred.
Maseke said the virus has not been detected in Namibian poultry yet, however importers are urged to contact the veterinary import/export office for further information on countries affected by the virus.
The Zimbabwe Daily news recently reported that in just one week, one of southern Africa’s biggest poultry producers in Zimbabwe, Irvine, lost 15 per cent of its chickens following the severe outbreak of avian influenza H5N8 at its Lanark farm south of Harare.
South Africa, Botswana and Mozambique have since banned poultry and related products from Zimbabwe.
Zimbabwe Poultry Association Chairperson, Solomon Zawe was quoted as saying the outbreak was a big blow to the industry and it would take time to recover.