The beekeepers in our country are predominantly hobby beekeepers, only a few are semi-professional.
All beekeepers must be registered at the Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain (FASFC). Those having more than 24 beehives, are considered professional beekeepers by the FASFC.
Both professional and hobby beekeepers are obliged by law to report certain bee diseases to the FASFC, so as to be able to protect the health of the bees.
Diseases subject to mandatory reporting
In order to avoid that particularly harmful bee diseases and plagues spread, or that new diseases are imported into our country, certain diseases are subject to mandatory reporting.
The Royal Decree of the 7th of March 2007 concerning the fight against contagious diseases of the bees, contains the list of diseases subject to mandatory reporting.
It concerns varroosis, acariosis, American foul brood, European foul brood, the small hive beetle (Aethina tumida) and the tropilaelaps infestation of honey bees. You will find more information on these diseases and plagues on the page ‘diseases subject to mandatory reporting’.
Every beekeeper who even has the slightest suspicion that his colonies are infected or have been affected by these diseases, must report this immediately to the Provincial Control Unit (PCU) of the Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food (FASFC) where the bee stand is located.
Other bee diseases
If a bee keeper finds abnormal mortality in his hives, but cannot discover the cause, then by law he is obliged to deliver a sample to the national reference laboratory of the Veterinary and Agrochemical Research Centre (CODA-CERVA, Groeselenberg 99, 1180 Uccle) (see article 8 of the Royal Decree of the 7th of March 2007).
Which samples exactly have to be forwarded, depends on the type of bee disease. Therefore, it is recommended to first contact the CODA-CERVA.