China and Mexico have suspended US poultry imports following the outbreak of bird flu in Indiana last week. This is the first case of bird flu in the United States. The U.S. Department of Agriculture has confirmed that two farms in Kentucky and Virginia have been affected.
According to the Ministry, the United States is the world’s largest poultry producer. Authorities are keeping the affected areas in isolation. Existing birds are slaughtered to prevent further spread. So far no human cases have been identified and officials say the episodic is not a public health problem.
Tyson Foods, one of the largest poultry producers in the United States, says it has stepped up preventive measures, especially on the East Coast. For example, the group has limited the number of visitors to the farms and has extended the cleaning time for vehicles going to the farms.
$ 3.3 billion in damage in 2015
The American poultry industry is on high alert to prevent a recurrence of the 2015 bird flu epidemic. At that time, it affected more than two hundred farms. Then nearly 50 million birds had to be killed and many countries stopped importing. The ministry estimates the total loss at about $ 3.3 billion.
Europe has been in the midst of a bird flu epidemic for several months, with more than 18 million chickens in Italy and France since the first cases were discovered in late November.
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