In effort to prevent porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) outbreak France and the EU Commission consider restrictions in regards to importing live pigs, semen and other pork products - such as dried blood plasma- for animal feed from the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Japan.
Early last week, France announced a complete ban on live hogs, semen and pork by- products imports however the official restrictions were postponed until after the EU Commission meeting on the issue had been held.
At the meeting in Brussels on May 6, EU Commission reviewed latest scientific information on PEDV and the live hog import records.
As result, the EU officials decided not to issue a complete ban since only 250 hogs were actually imported from Canada and U.S. last year and no live imports are scheduled for this year. Instead, the EU Commission issued new rules that require pork by-products used for animal feed treated to 80 degrees C. before it can be imported. Additionally, the products must be stored for six weeks to eliminate any virus that may have contaminated the blood after treatment.
France has not made an official announcement if it will enact the outright ban.
In an official statement from Ministry of Agriculture of France, following the EU Commission meeting, said, “Additional measures will be adopted if necessary, depending on the evolution of the health situation and the available scientific data.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Inspection Services (APHIS) will be working with the EU to clarify the new rules.