The Finnish Food Authority is preparing to combat avian influenza on fur farms

July 21/2023

The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry changed the classification of avian influenza on fur farms on Tuesday 18 July 2023. This enables the Finnish Food Authority and the Regional State Administrative Agencies to take more effective disease control measures in fur farms where avian influenza has been diagnosed. The first authority measures will begin as soon as possible. At the moment, the infection has been diagnosed on five fur farms. The investigations will continue.

As a first measure, the Regional State Administrative Agency imposes farm-specific restrictions to prevent the spread of infections through animals, feed, manure or other material. The Finnish Food Authority is currently preparing decisions to kill and organise the killing of infected animals on fur farms. The number of animals ordered to be killed is based on a farm-specific assessment of the spread of the infection on the farm. Animal owners have the right to claim compensation from state funds for animals killed by an order issued by the Finnish Food Authority. The State is also responsible for other costs incurred by the authorities for eradicating the infection.

Wild birds are the main source of avian influenza infection for fur animals. All fur farms must ensure the control of wild birds and rodents (e.g. bird nets, bird deterrents, protection of feed and feed stores, waste feed cleaning and appropriate storage, rodent control baits) and biosecurity.

Further information:

Head of Unit Sirpa Kiviruusu, tel. +358 40 0920503

Read more

Avian influenza 
Fur farm zoonoses risk profile (pdf)
Avian influenza (in Finnish)
THL: Guidelines for the prevention of human avian influenza infections (in Finnish)

Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry press release 18 July 2023: Finland intensifies measures to combat avian influenza at fur farms