July 3, 2022

Are Eggs Safe to Eat During the Pathogenic Avian Influenza Outbreak?

No doubt you have heard of the serious bird flu outbreak that has resulted in the deaths of thousands of birds, including chickens. So you may have wondered: are eggs safe to eat during the pathogenic Avian influenza outbreak? The FDA has some answers. Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) is a disease caused by a virus. It is often referred to as the bird or avian flu. The virus spreads naturally among wild aquatic birds around the world. It can and has infected domestic poultry and other bird and animal species. This virus does not normally infect humans, but one person who lives in Colorado recently tested positive for this virus. That person was involved in the culling of poultry and had direct exposure to infect birds. On February 8, 2022, HPAI was detected in a … [Read more...]

WHO Urges Vigilance in Bird Flu Outbreaks

There have been many outbreaks of avian flu among bird flocks around the world in the last two months. The highly pathogenic H5N8 virus is spreading across Europe and other countries. The World Health Organization is telling countries they must be on the watch for possible human avian flu cases. No human H5N8 cases have been reported so far. But Dr. Caroline Brown, program manager for flu and other respiratory pathogens for the WHO's Regional Office for Europe said that "this does not mean this cannot happen, as experience tells us." The H5N8 threat to humans is "relatively low," but other subtypes have made the jump from birds to humans in the past. At least 24 European countries have reported H5N8 outbreaks since June 2016. More outbreaks have been reported in Asia, the Middle … [Read more...]

Indiana Farms Test Positive for Avian Influenza

Several farms in Indiana have tested positive for the presence of highly pathogenic H7N8 avian influenza (HPAI), which has resulted in a ban on U.S. poultry from several countries. South Korea and Japan announced this weekend that fresh poultry meat from the United States will not be allowed into those countries. Nine poultry farms in Indiana have tested positive for some form of the bird flu. The farms are all within the control, or quarantine, area that was established after the first farm was affected. Experts think the total number of birds sickened could be more than 100,000. This outbreak could delay the reopening of some export markets to U.S. poultry products. USDA labs are testing to see the strain of H7N8 confirmed at the nine Indiana farms. The Centers for Disease Control … [Read more...]

MN DNR Offers Advice for Turkey Hunters Re Avian Flu

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has released guidance for turkey hunters in the areas where turkey farms have experienced outbreaks of avian flu. The disease has not been found in wild turkeys yet, but on the eve of the season, hunters must take care to avoid potentially spreading the virus. Wild turkeys are susceptible to the virus. There is only a low risk to humans, but people should still avoid contact with wild birds. Michelle Carstensen, wildlife health program supervisor with the DNR said in a statement, "turkey hunters can take steps to minimize the risk of spreading HPAI, and they can be excellent scouts in helping identify wild birds like raptors or turkeys that could have been affected." The highly pathogenic avian influence H5N2 (HPAI) has been found … [Read more...]

Now 14 Turkey Farms in MN Diagnosed with Bird Flu

Fourteen turkey farms in Minnesota, and an egg-laying facility in Wisconsin, have now been confirmed with the highly pathogenic H5N2 avian influenza, or bird flu. The 14th farm was confirmed today. At leasts 900,000 turkeys in the state have been euthanized as a result of this outbreak. No human infections with the virus have ben detected at this time. The newly affected flocks are in Kandiyohi County, Cottonwood County, Lyon County, Stearns County, and Watonwan County. These farms have been quarantined, meaning movement of poultry and poultry-moving equipment has been restricted. The flocks will be euthanized, and the region will be monitored. The farms will be disinfected, and tested until the farms are confirmed to be free of the virus. In Wisconsin, the USDA has confirmed … [Read more...]

Third Minnesota Turkey Farm Hit with H5N2 Bird Flu

Birds at a third turkey farm in Minnesota have been diagnosed with the bird flu. The UsDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service confirms that the highly pathogenic H5N2 avian influenza strain was discovered in a commercial turkey flock in Sterns County, Minnesota. Unfortunately, this flock of 38,000 turkeys is within the Mississippi flyway. No human infections with the virus have been detected at this time, and the CDC considers the risk to people is low. The farm is now quarantined, and the remaining birds will be destroyed and kept out of the consumer food supply. The Minnesota Department of Health is working with poultry workers at the facility to make sure they are taking proper precautions to avoid spreading this disease. The MDH also reminds consumers that poultry and … [Read more...]

Foster Farms Turkey Farm Has Bird Flu Outbreak

A Foster Farms turkey farm in California has been quarantined after the highly pathogenic H5N8 avian flu (bird flu) was discovered. The flu has been found in flocks in the Pacific Northwest. There was a spike in bird deaths at the Foster Farms facility. Foster Farms made news last year when their product was linked to a multistate outbreak of multidrug-resistant Salmonella infections. In that outbreak, 634 people in 29 states were sickened. Almost 40% of patients were hospitalized, a rate much higher than usual in Salmonella outbreaks, because the seven outbreak strains of Salmonella were so resistant to antibiotics. The birds did not enter into commerce and the USDA says there is no risk to the general public. No human cases of these avian influenza viruses have been detected in the … [Read more...]

Nine Farms Affected by Avian Influenza in British Columbia

A total of nine farms have now been affected by avian influenza H5N2 in British Columbia, Canada, according to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA). The Fraser Valley farms are close to the farm where the outbreak began. This particular strain of the bird flu virus is highly pathogenic and very contagious. The province of British Columbia has notified the CFIA of another farm where the illness is suspected; this outbreak was confirmed and is the ninth infected farm. The government is tracing movement in and out of these sites. Birds have been humanely euthanized on four farms, and depopulation activities began this week on the fifth farm. Almost 200,000 birds have been euthanized. The CFIA is urging poultry farmers to take an "active role" in protecting their flocks by using … [Read more...]

USDA Approves Poultry Imports from South Korea Despite Flu

In spite of a massive bird flu outbreak, the USDA has approved import of poultry products from South Korea. The final rule grants equivalency status to the Republic of Korea. It becomes effective May 27, 2014. It reads "slaughtered poultry or parts or other products thereof processed in certified Korean establishments will be eligible for export to the United States. All such products will be subject to re-inspection at United States ports of entry by FSIS inspectors." The bird flu in outbreak in Korea, which was discovered January 2014, has led to the culling of 11 million birds nationwide. Food safety and consumer groups are opposed to this new USDA rule for this reason and for many others. Food and Water Water issued a press release about this matter. They filed comments … [Read more...]

New Bird Flu Outbreak in Korea; 500,000 Chickens Culled

A new case of H5N8 bird flu in Korea has led to the culling of 50,000 chickens, according to The Chosun Ilbo. The Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs confirmed the case on Sunday, March 9, 2014. Now only Gangwon and Jeju provinces do not have birds with the virus. No human infections have been reported to date. A farm in Gyeongju bought 6,700 chickens from a farm in Pyeongtaek, in Gyeonggi Province. The new bird flu strain was detected there on March 4, 2014. The virus was found in bird droppings on the farm. Authorities are culling 500,000 chickens in the area. Lab tests are ongoing to determine if the virus is highly transmissible. The new bird flu strain was detected in Korea on January 16, 2014. Since then, more than 2.8 million birds have been killed. In the U.S. … [Read more...]

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