The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has embarked on a new data collection exercise across the EU to identify how the avian influenza (AI) virus enters poultry farms and the risks posed by wild birds.
The move is in response to the flow of new outbreaks of AI, reported among wild birds and poultry across Europe since the end of October 2016 which, according to EFSA, now includes cases of HPAI H5N8 virus in Hungary, Poland, Croatia, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Denmark and the Netherlands.
“Our experts are supporting Member States in their data collection activities aimed at identifying how the virus enters poultry farms and the risks posed by wild birds,” said EFSA. “This information will help us to re-assess the risk of introduction of AI into the EU based on new scientific knowledge.”
Based on the results of this exercise, EFSA has promised to update its scientific advice regarding AI risks and the potential spread of the virus in 2017.