PARIS (Reuters) – France has chosen German company Boerhinger Ingelheim to supply the 80 million doses of vaccines against bird flu for its vaccination campaign to start on the autumn, an agriculture ministry spokesperson said on Wednesday.

Boerhinger Ingelheim declined to comment.

The government launched a tender in April to vaccinate ducks against avian influenza, commonly called bird flu, that has ravaged flocks around the world, leading to the culling of hundreds of million birds.

The vaccination campaign is due to start on October, making France the first country in the European Union to vaccinate poultry against the deadly virus.

French firm Ceva Animal Health and U.S. company Zoetis had also applied in the tender.

Farm ministry officials said last month that tests carried out in France on Ceva and Boehringer Ingelheim’s vaccines showed favourable results.

(Reporting by Sybille de La Hamaide; Editing by Benoit Van Overstraeten)

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