In the past, several outbreaks of notifiable animal diseases in The Netherlands have resulted in large-scale (preventive) culling of animals.
This meant that many healthy non-infected animals were culled to control an outbreak and prevent further infection. This practice induces substantial financial losses and considerable debate in the society. Based on several animal diseases modeling studies carried out by the CVI and the LEI, both part of Wageningen UR emergency vaccination is now included in various emergency scenarios for animal disease outbreaks.
The livestock sector however, is concerned about trade restrictions. Vaccinated animals can pose a risk because they show little or no clinical signs if infected. This has resulted in the European regulation and restrictions on exports. There are also so-called channeling obligations; products from vaccinated animals must be kept and treated in a specific way and / or marked. Vaccinated animals may not leave the country of origin alive.
This project involves an assessment of the risks for further spread of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) and classical swine fever (CSF) of vaccinated animals and their products. The information from this project can be used to evaluate the current requirements and the desirability of channeling. In 2013, the European directives will come together in the new Animal Health Law. This process offers opportunities for improvements and minimisation of trade restrictions.