Spain faces poultry export restrictions

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The Spanish veterinary authorities have reported one outbreak of low pathogenic avian influenza (H7N1) at a farm in Catalonia.

Belarus and Hong Kong have introduced restrictions on the import of poultry meat from Spain following the outbreak.

A poultry farm was shut down in the northeast region of Catalonia and restrictions have been imposed on export of poultry meat. Out of 12,358 susceptible birds, 133 cases and deaths were reported. The remaining 12,225 birds were destroyed.

Spanish state TV reported that breeding hens have been culled while eggs and feed have been destroyed in Lerida in order to stop the spread of the disease. However the level was reported to be very low and there was no danger to public health.

Although the source of the outbreak has not yet been determined, the situation has been contained and no further outbreaks are expected to occur.

The virus was found after tests were carried out on May 14, and 133 hens had died.

According to the state-run Belta news agency, the Spanish restrictions apply to live birds, poultry meat and hatching eggs from the Catalonia region.

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