Eight Brazilian states to pursue FMD “free zone”

By Bob Moser
Daily News – Eight states in Brazil’s northeast signed an agreement this week with the Ministry of Agriculture to expand the country’s official foot-and-mouth disease “free zone” into their territories, following thorough investigation and testing.
Agriculture secretaries for the states of Alagoas, Ceará, Maranhão, Paraíba, Pará, Pernambuco, Piaui and Rio Grande do Norte signed the deal March 27 with members of Brazil’s federal ministries of agriculture and health.
The main mandate of the document signed by the secretaries is for their states to implement measures that already exist in their own plans of action to achieve an FMD “free zone” and correct errors or deficiencies in their states’ animal sanitary practices found through federal audits in 2011 and early 2012.
Brazil’s federal government has already invested BRL100 million (US$54.56 million) to help northeastern states achieve FMD-free recognition, and said its goal this year is for all eight states in the latest agreement to succeed with the process, according to a Ministry of Agriculture press release.
The northeastern states of Bahia and Sergipe have already been declared FMD-free, as has north-central Pará. Seroepidemiological surveys must now be completed in the states of Alagoas, Ceará, Maranhão, Pará, Pernambuco and Piaui.
Paraiba and Rio Grande do Norte did not meet minimum requirements in their last inspections by federal health officials, and they will face restrictions for transportation of animals susceptible to FMD, and food products to other states. The restrictions will be enforced until the two states pass all FMD-related audits.
Source: Daily News, April 3rd, 2012
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