The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has removed a ban on commercial imports of food products and livestock from the EU countries unaffected by foot and mouth disease.

As the highly contagious virus looked set to sweep across Europe, the CFIA implemented a temporary restriction on imports on 13 March.

While this has now been lifted for imports from Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Italy, Finland, Germany, Spain, Sweden, Portugal and Luxembourg, safety measures will remain in place at all international airports in Canada. All international travellers will be expected to use a disinfectant footbath.

The ban will continue to apply meanwhile to the EU countries where cases of the disease have been confirmed: Britain, Netherlands, Greece, France and Ireland.

Canada’s last case of foot and mouth in the domestic herd was recorded in 1952. Frederique Moulin, veterinarian and national manager at the agency, noted: “We should not get complacent, ever.”