Despite the fact that the Netherlands was declared AI FREE ON 17th May 2017,SA has steadfastly refused to re-open this market.

The original reason advanced was that this was because of the “plight” of the local poultry industry.

When it was pointed out that such decisions are beyond the powers of the local veterinary authorities and that only sps issues could determine market reopenings,DAFF changed their tune and maintained that they first need to send a “fact finding team” to the EU (NOTE,NOT MERELY THE NETHERLANDS),and that such team would visit when the finances are sorted out and only after the European summer holidays (which have not commenced yet).

This is obviously a tactic which will be applied to other EU countries once they reach AI Free status,and is undoubtedly an unfair trade practice,whereby because of the difficulties the local authorities are experiencing with the safeguard issue,they are using sps issues to maintain the closure of EU markets.

We are inverstigating all our legal options in this regard.