Bird flu: Livetec Systems launches 'national outbreak plan' for farmers

The NOP is a comprehensive document that simplifies the regulations and legislation set by assurance schemes and the UK government
The NOP is a comprehensive document that simplifies the regulations and legislation set by assurance schemes and the UK government

Biosecurity experts Livetec Systems have launched a national outbreak plan (NOP) for farmers and backyard bird keepers.

As UK farmers count the cost of the worst season of avian influenza yet, Livetec Systems – the industry leader for livestock protection and biosecurity - has launched the NOP to help protect flock health.

The NOP is the first step toward more robust farm contingency planning and will help poultry farmers take a more preventative approach to safeguard their flocks and farm workers.

As the disease continues to spread at alarming levels amongst commercial, backyard and wild birds, contingency planning has never been more important.

Gordon Samet, commercial director at Livetec, said this was the worst season of AI the country had ever faced.

He said: "It’s only through increasing the standards of contingency planning everywhere, while applying more stringent biosecurity measures that seek to prevent AI, that we can be truly vigilant and mitigate the risks of avian influenza."

The NOP is a comprehensive document that simplifies the regulations and legislation set by assurance schemes and the UK government.

As suitable for backyard flocks as it is for commercial producers, it gives vital information for all poultry keepers to help them protect their birds and be prepared in case an outbreak of HPAI impacts them.

Julian Sparrey, technical director at Livetec, said: “The plan is filled with up-to-date information, detailing everything farmers need to know to and the steps they should take if a disease outbreak is confirmed in their area.

"It covers everything from licensing issues, to what to do in restriction zones, such as the Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) or a Surveillance Zone (SZ), it is also packed with information on avian influenza including the symptoms of the disease and virus survivability of different strains.

"Having all the information at hand will save farmers time and allow them to be as robust as possible in their response, taking a firm prevention rather than cure stance.”

The Livetec National Outbreak Plan includes:

• A how-to guide for disease declaration

• Information reporting when zones are implemented

• Explanation of movement restrictions

• Movement licensing and their conditions of use

• Zone definitions and their requirements

• How to deal with the media

• Farming related support services and mental health planning

• A guide on how to change or update your CPH number

• Updates of the Governments exotic diseases control and AI policy

• An acronym glossary to quickly define key terms

Julian Sparrey, technical director at Livetec, said: “Despite being over 18 months into the largest AI outbreak we have known, many poultry keepers are still unaware or confused about the measure the government take.

"This booklet explains the response process and disease prevention requirements in simple language, to save you time. It is designed to support you, your birds and your staff.

"An outbreak of AI on your farm is distressing to everyone and understanding the process and planning for it reduces the impact on you and your birds.

"The NOP from Livetec is designed to enhance preparedness and understanding of the current landscape and how farmers should operate within it.”

It is available for free to everyone in the UK for a limited time, including poultry farmers and backyard keepers by using code NOP2023.

Get your free National Outbreak Plan here.

Who are Livetec?

Livetec were established in 2010 and is dedicated to shaping the future of biosecurity.

Their primary focus lies in providing tailored disease prevention solutions for on-farm operations, assisting farmers in developing proactive strategies to safeguard their livestock and secure their livelihoods.

With over a decade of experience, Livetec has collaborated with farmers dealing with a wide array of challenges.

Additionally, they have partnered with esteemed academic institutions, as well as commercial and industry organisations, to advance evidence-based research in the field of biosecurity.