Controversy over SVD in Italy
Italy did not report an outbreak of swine vesicular
disease (SVD) to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) in the area
89 cases of the disease were
reported last year by Italy, but these were mainly in the Southern regions.
The area is still not considered disease-free by the EU as around 30,000
animals were reported there infected since the beginning of December last year.
To make matters worse, the main part of Italy's pig breeding industry is
concentrated around Brescia.
A year ago, an epidemic of SVD was rife in the provinces of Brescia, Bergamo
and Mantua, but appeared in February to be under control. In July, a new
outbreak occurred, which continued spreading until November.
On November 17, ANAS (Italian Association of Pig Breeders) distributed a
circular from the veterinary office of the Italian health ministry stating that
the virus was being controlled but that pig transports within Italy and
elsewhere in the EU were forbidden.
Italy is required to carry out a double cleaning and disinfection of all
transports of pigs leaving the country.
€28m has been invested in controlling the disease
and the fact that the EU has not declared the Brescia area to be 'disease-free'
is a sore point with the Italian officials.
This issue will most
certainly be on the agenda of the next meeting of Scofca- the EU's Standing
Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health.
Technical director of ANAS, Luca Buttazoni, has also called for SVD to be
removed from the list of dangerous diseases.
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