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ERMA Report on Equine Influenza Available

Media Release
23 September 2008


ERMA Report on Equine Influenza Available

ERMA New Zealand's Evaluation and Review Report on the application to import and use, under controlled conditions, a live genetically modified virus vaccine to protect horses against Equine Influenza has been published and is available on the organisation's website, www.ermanz.govt.nz.

The application has been made by the New Zealand Racing Board and New Zealand Equine Health Association Incorporated.

The Evaluation and Review Report is a source of information to the Environmental Risk Management Authority.

It describes the organisms which are the subject of the conditional release application, and analyses the risks, costs and benefits of the genetically modified organisms contained in the vaccines (Proteqflu and Proteqflu Te).

It also proposes conditions, or controls, that could be placed on the vaccine if the application were to be approved by the Authority.

The report forms part of the information the Authority will consider in making its decision. It will also consider information received from the applicant and from the 29 people and organisations that made submissions on the application.

The Authority will hear additional information from the applicant and eight submitters who requested to be heard at a public hearing scheduled to be held on Tuesday 7 October 2008 in Wellington.

The Authority's decision is usually available within 30 working days of a hearing.

ERMA New Zealand's responsibility is limited to the GMO component of the vaccine. Approval to use the vaccine must also be obtained from the NZ Food Safety Authority's Agricultural Compounds and Veterinary Medicines Group.


ENDS

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