France announced that it has initiated a call for bids to purchase 80 million doses of avian influenza vaccines to prepare for its vaccination campaign in the autumn. This move makes France the first European Union member to take such a step.

The vaccines will be aimed at vaccinating ducks only, as the French duck sector has been severely impacted by avian influenza. France has mandated two companies, France’s Ceva Animal Health and Germany’s Boehringher Ingelheim, to develop the avian influenza vaccines.

ANSES, the French health and safety agency, has proposed three vaccination scenarios to supplement the preventive biosecurity measures taken in the field.

The effectiveness of the proposed scenarios will depend on numerous assumptions and conditions, and will require a reinforced surveillance protocol for vaccinated farms.

None of the scenarios involves vaccinating broilers, which account for the majority of France’s poultry.

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