The European Commission has said it is limiting its ban on Bulgarian poultry imports to include only products from the Kardzhali region of the country, where an outbreak of Newcastle disease was discovered last month.

On 23 December the Commission suspended all imports from Bulgaria of live poultry including hatching eggs, fresh poultry meat, game meat and their products.

However, the Commission said that Bulgaria has now provided further information on the disease situation and requested the import restrictions be regionalised.

"As there is no indication of the disease in the rest of the country, the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health agreed on a Commission proposal to limit the suspension of imports to the single district of Kardzhali," the Commission said.

Newcastle disease is a contagious disease in poultry that can cause major losses in the poultry sector but has no impact on human health.

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