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Supply Chain

Bulgaria Reports Bird Flu Outbreak, New Cases Seen In The US

An outbreak of bird flu on a chicken farm in southern Bulgaria has led to the flocks there being culled, the country's food safety agency said.

The industrial farm in the village of Bogdanitsa is the seventh to be hit by the highly pathogenic avian influenza type A in the southern part of the Balkan country since December.

The risk to humans from the disease is considered to be low, but past outbreaks among farm birds have resulted in extensive slaughtering programmes to contain the spread.

Bird Flu Outbreak In The US

New bird flu cases were detected in a commercial chicken flock in Pennsylvania and a backyard flock in Utah, the US Department of Agriculture said on Saturday, with the outbreak now having spread to more than 30 states in the country.

The department said earlier this month it was looking into vaccines as an option to protect poultry against deadly bird flu as the country faces its worst outbreak since 2015. The current outbreak has wiped out well over twenty million chickens and turkeys in commercial flocks since February. Read full story

"Samples from the Pennsylvania flock were tested at the Pennsylvania Veterinary Laboratory and samples from the Utah flock were tested at the Utah Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, both part of the National Animal Health Laboratory Network," the USDA said in a statement on Saturday.

Read More: Egg Prices Increase Worldwide Amid Bird Flu, Ukraine War

Federal and state officials were working jointly on additional surveillance and testing in areas around affected flocks, the USDA said.

The recent highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) cases do not present an immediate public health concern, US authorities said.

Previously, the United States has eschewed vaccines, worried that importers will ban US poultry shipments because they cannot distinguish infected birds from vaccinated ones.

Poultry Meat Exports

The United States is the world's second-largest poultry meat exporter. In 2020, the value of US poultry and poultry product exports to the world reached $4.2 billion.

Bird flu has hit poultry in Europe and Asia in addition to North America, and the USDA is working with other countries on options for vaccines.

Trading has suffered, as importers like China have blocked imports from many US states with outbreaks.

News by Reuters, edited by ESM – your source for the latest supply chain news. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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