Britain faces the biggest bird flu crisis in its history

As Britain faces its biggest ever bird flu crisis, the government has announced that all poultry in England must be kept indoors from November 7, BBC reported on November 1. Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland have yet to implement the rules.

In October alone, 2.3 million birds died or were culled in the UK, where they needed to be rendering treatment equipment. Richard Griffiths, head of the British Poultry Council, said the price of free-range turkeys was likely to rise and the industry would be hit hard by new rules on indoor breeding.

The British government announced on October 31 that all poultry and domestic birds in England must remain indoors from November 7 to prevent the spread of bird flu.
That means the supply of eggs from free-range chickens will be suspended, Agence France-Presse reported, as the British government seeks to contain the outbreak to avoid disrupting supplies of turkeys and other meat during the Christmas season.

“We are facing our largest outbreak of avian influenza to date this year, with the number of cases in commercial farms and domestic birds rising rapidly across England,” Christina Middlemiss, the government’s chief veterinary officer, said in a statement.

She said the risk of infection in farmed birds had reached a point where it was now necessary to keep all birds indoors until further notice. The best form of prevention is still to take strict measures for the chicken rendering plant and avoid contact with wild birds by all means.

For now, the policy only applies to England. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, which have their own policies, are likely to follow suit as usual. The worst-hit counties of Suffolk, Norfolk and Essex in eastern England have been severely restricting the movement of poultry on farms since late September amid fears they could be infected by migratory birds flying in from the continent.

In the past year, the British government has detected the virus in more than 200 bird samples and culled millions of birds. Bird flu poses a very low risk to human health and poultry and eggs cooked correctly are safe to eat, Agence France-Presse quoted health experts as saying.copys

Post time: Nov-24-2022
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