The move is aimed at ensuring food safety and hygiene for city consumers during the Lunar New Year, when chicken is served as a traditional dish for all Vietnamese families.
VietNamNet Bridge - Ha Noi’s animal health teams are to strengthen surveillance at main checkpoints to curb the transportation of unquarantined animals and animal products, according to the city’s Animal Health Department.
According to the department’s representative Ho Thanh Ha, police, animal health inspectors and market watch teams will conduct round-the-clock checks on poultry, livestock and other products at nine checkpoints throughout the city, as of this month.
Those who are found to be violating regulations will have their products seized and be punished, depending on the severity of their violation.
Animal health inspectors will take charge of the surveillance, according to Ha.
Figures from the city’s Animal Health Department show that about 450 tonnes of poultry is consumed each day in Ha Noi, of which nearly 30 per cent is imported from other provinces.
There are nearly 15 slaughterhouses and 300 markets selling poultry and livestock products in Ha Noi.
The slaughter, transport and trade of these products are still complicated and hard to control as people try to take alternative routes to avoid the checkpoints.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has urged animal health authorities to focus on curbing avian influenza and foot-and-mouth disease in livestock.
According to acting head of the department Hoang Van Nam the epidemics can spread rapidly due to the increasing demand of the Tet holiday. Recently, foot and mouth disease has re-occurred in Cao Bang, Thai Nguyen and Ca Mau, resulting in the culling of hundreds of buffalo, cows and pigs.
In central Ha Tinh Province, a flock of 800 ducks tested positive for bird flu yesterday after 450 were slaughtered in Thach Quy Commune. All of the ducks were found to be unvaccinated and were destroyed to prevent the epidemic.
Nam said local authorities should check and ensure vaccination levels were at least 80 per cent, and that breeding facilities should be sterilised regularly.
Nam also said that the control of imported livestock from border area must be tightened.