Colombia cleared of foot-and-mouth

Country now aims to double meat exports

Cartagena’s colonial walled section and fortress are a UNESCO World Heritage site in Colombia. (

Bogota | Reuters — Colombia will look to double its meat exports now it has regained its status as a country free of foot-and-mouth disease, President Ivan Duque said on Thursday.

Foot-and-mouth is a highly contagious viral disease found in animals and is one of the most serious to affect livestock, including cattle, sheep and pigs.

The World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), which suspended the Andean country’s FMD-free status in August 2018, said on its website that Colombia had fulfilled the requirements to be re-declared free of the disease.

“We have waited months for this news,” Duque told reporters. “Now we want to open markets for Colombian meat… our goal is to double our meat exports in the coming years.”

Colombia, which has had a free trade agreement with Canada since 2011, is now classed by the OIE as a country where vaccination for FMD is practiced.

— Reporting for Reuters by Oliver Griffin.

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