After Cattle Disease Blow, Brazil Takes Steps to Prevent Bird Flu

Brazil’s Minister of Agriculture, Livestock, and Supply, Roberto Rodrigues, said today that the Brazilian government is taking steps to avert bird flu in the country.

Rodrigues stated that Brazil is "concerned over the indications of the occurrence of bird flu on a global scale and anticipating the possibility of the advent of the disease in Brazil, has taken technical steps to prepare the system of animal health protection and is using transparency in the treatment of information about each measure."

Among the actions mentioned by Rodrigues are the suspension of imports of birds and products from countries that evidence cases of the disease, surveillance at product entry points and the preparation of a national register of producers.

Brazil will also be surveilling routes of migratory birds; adopting restriction of agricultural materials, particularly of a genetic nature; using greater rigor in the surveillance of ports, airports, and highways; and promoting the creation of mechanisms for society to notify suspected cases of the disease.

The Minister recalled that the government’s concern over bird flu is due to the "exceptional entrepreneurial capacity of the domestic poultry sector," which, through September of this year, had already exported around US$ 2 billion to 142 countries.

"The increase in the production of chicken and derived products in the country is impressive. Between 1995 and 2005 the increase was 162%."

Rodrigues delivered a speech Wednesday, October 27, on the Quality and Health of Brazilian Poultry Products at the 19th Brazilian Poultry Congress, in the Ministry of Foreign Relations, in Brasí­lia.

Agência Brasil

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