EFSA assesses risks during animal transit

by Editor fleischwirtschaft.com
Thursday, November 20, 2008

Data from EFSA’s Animal Health and Welfare Panel indicate that vaccination may be more effective in reducing the risk of BTV transmission during transit than testing animals before transportation. Background is the selection of animals to be transported.

This opinion completes EFSA’s reply to a request from the European Commission covering several different aspects of the bluetongue disease. Earlier opinions on bluetongue – looking at issues including vaccination, the origins of BTV8 in Europe and the over-wintering of the virus – are available via the key topic section.

The European Commission had asked EFSA’s Animal Health and Welfare Panel to look at the risk of transmission of the bluetongue virus (BTV) when animals are in transit from or through restricted zones identified by EU Member States. EFSA was also asked to study the impact of different control measures in reducing the spread of BTV.

Due to a lack of data it was not possible to quantify the precise risk of these forms of BTV transmission, but the panel found that treating animals and vehicles with insecticides or repellents before loading may help to reduce the risk. The Panel therefore recommended further research to assess the impact of these treatments on BTV vectors.