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Food safety authority orders control over imported cattle

Hungary's National Food Chain Safety Authority (Nebih) has ordered the monitoring of cattle imported to Hungary after reports from the Netherlands, Germany, and Belgium of cases of bluetongue disease.
5. December 2023 14:37

Nebih noted on its website that the disease had caused an epidemic in the Netherlands in September, then it spread across the German and Belgian borders in October.

Controls focused on 59 shipments of 3,800 cattle arriving in Hungary since July, the authority said, adding that there were only 1,150 animals in the country at the time of the restrictions, the rest having been exported on to third countries.

So far, 15 samples of a total 1,700 have been returned positive, the authority said, adding that “though these cattle pose no danger of infection … prevention such as eliminating insects that spread the virus as well as strict observation of quarantine rules are essential in preserving Hungary’s bluetongue-free status.”

The authority also said no cattle, sheep, or goat imports had arrived in Hungary since the introduction of restrictions, adding that mosquitoes that spread the disease were no longer active in the cold weather. But the authority has asked farmers to exercise extreme caution when buying stock for the countries affected.


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