Paris, 20 May 2009 – The OIE already strongly advised on the pointless culling of pigs in relation with the recent outbreaks of novel A/H1N1 influenza. In its official statement issued on the 30 April 2009, the OIE advised its Members that the culling of pigs will not help to guard against public or animal health risks presented by this novel A/H1N1 influenza virus and that such action is not recommended.
However, some countries have decided to implement massive pig culling operations in this context, on the basis of the precaution principle. The OIE recalls that culling of animals should always be carried out in accordance with OIE international standards on killing methods for disease control purposes (Volume 1; Section 7; Chapter 7.6 of the Terrestrial Animal Health Code; http://oie.jouve-si.fr/en/international-standard-setting/terrestrial-code/access-online/?htmfile=chapitre_1.7.6.htm
The Second OIE Global Conference on Animal Welfare, held in Cairo, Egypt in October 2008 rallied support from all OIE Members and partners for worldwide implementation of OIE animal welfare standards. The OIE strongly encourages the effective implementation of these standards by all Members and offers its assistance to any Member wishing to implement culling operations in compliance with OIE standards.