Dutch sheep and goats inoculated against Q-fever
The Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority nVWA says all sheep and goat farmers in the Netherlands have inoculated their animals against Q fever. The Authority initially gave the farmers until 1 August to complete inoculation, but earlier this month many farms were still not ready.
The nVWA threatened to vaccinate sheep and goats at the farmers’ expense but this was eventually not necessary. In the coming two weeks the nVWA will carry out inspections to check whether all farmers have complied with their administrative obligations regarding the vaccinations. Petting zoos have until 1 January to vaccinate their sheep and goats. So far, 31 percent of these farms have complete inoculation. .
Q-fever is a disease which can be passed on to humans. Since 2007, about 4,000 were infected with Q fever, 19 of whom have died of the disease.
Dutch agricultural sector organisation LTO Nederland says that after the Q fever crisis, goat farmers are again facing a difficult year. In the past year, the price of goat milk dropped 15 percent compared to 2009. This year saw a minor increase, but feed prices have gone up as well.
Exports of goat cheese and raw goat milk to countries such as France have decreased as the result of increased production there.
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