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Norway Free of Viral Haemorrhagic Septicaemia

23 August 2012, at 1:00am

NORWAY - Norway has regained its free status for the fish disease Viral Haemorrhagic Septicaemia (VHS).

VHS free status has been approved by ESA (EFTA Surveillance Authority) in consultation with the European Commission.

"It means that the whole country except for the border with Russia is getting back to the disease free status. There are no longer specific limitations for operation, removal or export of fish from Storfjorden," said Martin Binding, senior advisor at the Food Safety Authority.

The approval is based upon an extensive monitoring and sampling programme.

"In this context, ESA has also approved the Food Safety Authority's emergency plan for exotic diseases," said Mr Binding.

Norway lost its VHS free status in a restricted area in Great Bay on Sunnmre after several outbreaks in rainbow trout in 2007 and 2008. The detection of VHS in 2007 was the first detection in Norway since 1974 and the first in salt water.

"VHS case has been demanding. Many employees at the FSA, at the National Veterinary Institute and the local fish health have put a significant effort in prevention and monitoring of VHS in Storfjorden," concluded Mr Binding.


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