South Africa

Botswana bans poultry from South Africa

Botswana has banned the importation of poultry and other poultry products from South Africa.

The Agricultural Ministry said this is coming after South Africa recorded an outbreak of avian influenza on a chicken farm.

According to South Africa, as of Tuesday, about 300 birds had died of avian flu at the commercial chicken-layer farm in Ekurhuleni, east of Johannesburg. Samples from the farm tested positive for the H5 strain.

Botswana’s Ministry of Agricultural Development and Food Security said in a statement that “as a result, the import of domesticated and wild birds, their products (meat, eggs, and feathers), from South Africa is banned with immediate effect.”

Meanwhile, authorities in Botswana have called on the public to be vigilant and report any domestic poultry deaths or that of wild birds to veterinary offices. The public has also been cautioned to report any reaction to poultry to the nearest hospital.

This is not the first time Botswana has banned poultry from South Africa.

In 2017, there was an outbreak of the highly pathogenic H5N8 strain of avian flu. This made some poultry farmers get rid of millions of affected birds.

Neighbouring countries including Zimbabwe and Namibia also banned poultry imports from South Africa at the time.

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