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Morocco vaccinates half a million cattle against “foot-and-mouth disease”

The National Office of Health Safety of Food Products (ONSSA) revealed that the national campaign to vaccinate the national herd of cattle against foot and mouth disease (FMD), which was launched in January 2019 as specified, “has enabled the vaccination of more than 500,000 heads of cattle against the disease, representing 17% of the total target cattle head.”

“For some regions where FMD cases were recorded, the coverage of the herd was 45%, 43% and 30% in Khouribga, Faqih Ben Saleh and Sidi Bennour districts, respectively,” the office said in a report. The vaccination process continues in all parts of the Kingdom to cover the total national herd of cattle.

The National Bureau of Health Safety of Food Products explained that its interests, with the help of the local authorities, intervene immediately after the discovery of any hotbed. “The area has been eliminated to the various points discovered at the level of the regions of Faqih Ben Saleh, Khouribga, Sidi Bennour and Tangier.

“Clean up, disinfect and respect biosecurity measures for the entry and exit of people, as well as the destruction and burial of all cattle and sensitive animals in the affected area,” the source said.

As for the material compensation of farmers, the office explained that “it will pay financial compensation to farmers from their cattle starting in February according to the laws in force in this area, and the value of compensation varies by type, age and class of livestock, and take into account the market prices.”

The laboratory tests carried out in Morocco and confirmed by another international experts, “revealed that the foot-and-mouth disease virus that infected cows this year is new and has never been in Morocco before 2019, and the stumbling virus is present in a group of African countries.”

Laboratory tests on animals suspected of FMD were found in 10 foci that were free of the disease, the report says.

Foot-and-mouth disease is a viral disease that affects cattle and is not transmitted to humans. It is intended for animals, especially cows. Consumption of animal products (meat and meat products, milk and dairy products) does not pose any danger to consumer health.

In order to protect the national herd of cattle, the ONSSA has organized regular annual campaigns to vaccinate cows against foot-and-mouth disease since 2014, which has contributed to the enhancement of cattle herd immunity.

Thanks to the strategy adopted to combat this disease, Morocco has an official program of foot and mouth control approved by the World Organization for Animal Health.

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