On Monday May 22, 2023, Bernard Malabirade, president of the Gers Chamber of Agriculture announced a new “enormous crisis” of avian flu. This viral disease is rife in birds, especially farmed birds (geese, chickens, ducks) and can, depending on the virus, infect humans. However, after a lull in March and April, the epidemic seems to be resuming much earlier than usual.

The increase in avian flu cases since the beginning of May 2023 is worrying. For the president of the Gers Chamber of Agriculture, the situation “is even out of control”, reports our colleagues from TF1. For Christophe Mesplède, vice-president of the Landes union, it would be a question of a “real viral fire”, the announcement of a “major crisis and not just a resurgence of the virus”.

At the beginning of the year, the epidemic had resulted in hundreds of thousands of euros in losses for breeders. Since the beginning of May, nearly 900,000 animals have already been slaughtered in the Southwest, according to the agricultural union Modef. In this anxiety-provoking context, the implementation of vaccination is at the center of all discussions.

Last February, the Minister of Agriculture and Food Sovereignty announced a deployment of the vaccine in September. But for breeders, time is running out. “In my opinion, September is already too far away. It may be necessary to consider that an area can benefit from the first doses produced this summer, if they are available”, declares Bernard Malabirade, president of the chamber of agriculture of the Gers (La Dépêche).

For now, discover in our slideshow below which departments are affected by the resurgence of avian flu in May 2023.