Bird Flu Detected in Kentucky, Virginia, Indiana as Outbreak Spreads, Wild Birds Can Carry HPAI A(h5) Viruses Without Showing Symptoms
HNewsWire-Pestilence: A deadly type of bird flu is rapidly spreading throughout the United States. Avian Flu Detected in Five More US States
A deadly form of avian flu is rapidly spreading throughout the United States. The danger to humans is negligible, but bird flu may devastate the country's chicken business just in time for Easter.
The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) stated on Wednesday that highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) has been found in five additional states.
In Berkshire County, Massachusetts, a non-commercial, mixed-species backyard flock (non-poultry);
In Johnson County, Wyoming, a non-commercial, mixed-species backyard flock (non-poultry).
A commercial poultry flock in North Carolina's Johnston County;
In Franklin County, Ohio, a non-commercial home chicken flock (non-poultry).
In Kidder County, North Dakota, there is also a backyard chicken flock (poultry).
According to Bloomberg, the bird flu has been identified in 23 states in flocks totalling around 17 million birds throughout the Mid-Atlantic, Northeast, and Midwest.
The official total for killed hens and turkeys on March 21 was roughly 12 million. To reduce disease transmission, infected flocks have been culled, and the USDA has created an A.I. monitoring program to check for the illness in commercial chicken farms.
Because the HPAI outbreak is new, no one knows when it will end. The last epidemic, in 2015, led in the slaughter of 50 million laying hens across 15 states, raising chicken and egg costs.
A dozen Grade A Eggs are now cost roughly $2 and are expected to rise in price in the run-up to Easter.
Spring retail prices are at their highest in five years.
Chicken breast prices in the United States have reached new highs, averaging roughly $3.81 per pound in stores.
According to Bloomberg, leading overseas importers of US poultry may soon balk at purchases.
"Top purchasers like Mexico, China, and Cuba may bring in less poultry as a result of the finding in North Carolina, which is a big supplier of chicken and turkeys," said Jim Sumner, president of the USA Poultry & Egg Export Council in Tucker, Georgia.
The most serious fear is that HPAI will continue to spread at commercial chicken farms as wild flocks roam throughout the nation. This might continue to push up chicken costs, contributing to record-high food inflation.
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