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Macedonia bans poultry imports from European countries due to bird flu

Macedonian authorities have introduced a temporary ban on all poultry and egg imports from the Netherlands, Germany and Great Britain on Monday after the reports that bird flu cases are registered in these European countries.

"In our oversight, considering all analyzed samples of caught or dead wild fowl, or poultry kept in different conditions in Macedonia, we have not detected the presence of this disease. It also hasn't been detected in the region either", the Macedonian Food and Veterinary Agency stated on Monday.

According to the director of the Agency Zoran Popovski, all products imported so far in Macedonia are safe and they have all necessary certificates by relevant institutions that prove their safety.

"But this type of influenza is extremely viral and can be transmitted to people as well. It is a so-called zoonosis, an infectious disease is transmitted between species, and therefore it is presumed that in the countries where the virus is detected, it is transmitted from wild birds to farm poultry", Popovski stated in Skopje on Monday, explaining the ban.

In the following period, the Agency will reinforce the controls and keep a close watch over the all possible channels for transmitting the virus into Macedonia.

The last "bird flu" or avian influenza panic in Macedonia dated back in 2005 when it hit the Europe. The poultry industry suffered a huge drop in demand then though poultry here were not infected. To mitigate people's fear, the company's workers and government officials eat poultry products and eggs in the promoting events.

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