Swine flu confirmed in Norfolk pig herd

DEFRA has called for calm after a Norfolk pig herd tested positive for the H1N1 swine flu virus.

A department official said it was the sixth case of the disease in the UK and there was no cause for alarm.

“Routine scanning surveillance confirmed that the strain of the virus found is virtually identical to strains circulating in humans. It is common for pigs to be affected by influenza. Influenza in pigs is not a notifiable disease,” the official said.

Voluntary measures, set out in a new Code of Practice on influenza on the DEFRA website, www.defra.gov.uk, are in place on the farm.

The official said that there was no food safety issue because the disease was not transmissable to humans through pork which had been properly handled and cooked.