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Avian Influenza

Question for Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

UIN HL7382, tabled on 28 March 2022

To ask Her Majesty's Government what contingency plans they have made in the event of further widespread outbreaks of avian flu.

Answered on

11 April 2022

Defra’s objective in tackling any outbreak of avian influenza is to eradicate the disease as quickly as possible from the UK poultry and captive-bird population and regain UK World Organisation for Animal Health disease-free status. Defra’s approach is set out in the Notifiable Avian Disease Control Strategy for Great Britain (copy attached to this answer) and supported by the United Kingdom contingency plan for exotic notifiable diseases of animals (copy attached).

In Great Britain the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) leads Government action on animal disease control and has outbreak response plans in place. These include measures to contract companies to support eradication and cover such matters as the deployment of non-Government vets and experts in culling and disposal of birds. APHA also works closely with other agencies in the Defra group to provide additional capacity.