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PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 1:43 pm 
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USDA cites H5N8 in commercial turkey farm in Stanislaus County California

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 1:44 pm 
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Highly Pathogenic H5N8 Avian Influenza Confirmed in
Commercial Turkey Flock in California

No immediate public health concern; detected strain not known to harm humans

WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2015— The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has confirmed the presence of highly pathogenic (HPAI) H5N8 avian influenza in a commercial turkey flock in Stanislaus County, California. This is the first finding of HPAI in commercial poultry during the ongoing disease incident in the Pacific Flyway. No human cases of these avian influenza viruses have been detected in the United States, Canada, or internationally, and there continues to be no public health concern.

Samples from the flock, which experienced increased mortality, were tested at the California Animal Health & Food Safety Laboratory System (CAHFS) and the APHIS National Veterinary Services Laboratories in Ames, Iowa confirmed the finding. APHIS is partnering closely with the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA), which has quarantined the facility. APHIS and CDFA have initiated an incident command response, and APHIS will assist CDFA in depopulating the remaining birds on the property to prevent the spread of the disease. Birds from the involved flock will not enter the food system.

H5N8 has not been shown to present a health risk to the public. As a reminder, the proper handling and cooking of poultry and eggs to an internal temperature of 165 ˚F kills bacteria and viruses.

Federal and State partners are working jointly on additional surveillance and testing in the nearby area, following existing avian influenza response plans. These plans also will include preventing the movement of risky animals or products out of the immediate area to prevent further disease spread. The United States has the strongest AI surveillance program in the world, and USDA is working with its partners to actively look for the disease in commercial poultry operations, live bird markets, and in migratory wild bird populations.

USDA will be notifying the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) of this detection as part of USDA’s ongoing reporting of all HPAI findings. USDA also continues to communicate with trading partners to encourage adherence to OIE standards and minimize trade impacts. OIE trade guidelines call on countries to base trade restrictions on sound science and, whenever possible, limit restrictions to those animals and animal products within a defined region that pose a risk of spreading disease of concern.

These virus strains can travel in wild birds without them appearing sick. People should avoid contact with sick/dead poultry or wildlife. If contact occurs, wash your hands with soap and water and change clothing before having any contact with healthy domestic poultry and birds.

All bird owners, whether commercial producers or backyard enthusiasts, should continue to practice good biosecurity, prevent contact between their birds and wild birds, and to report sick birds or unusual bird deaths to State/Federal officials, either through your state veterinarian or through USDA’s toll-free number at 1-866-536-7593. Additional information on biosecurity for backyard flocks can be found at healthybirds.aphis.usda.gov

Additional background:

Avian influenza (AI) is caused by an influenza type A virus which can infect poultry (such as chickens, turkeys, pheasants, quail, domestic ducks, geese, and guinea fowl) and is carried by free flying waterfowl such as ducks, geese and shorebirds. AI viruses are classified by a combination of two groups of proteins: hemagglutinin or “H” proteins, of which there are 16 (H1–H16), and neuraminidase or “N” proteins, of which there are 9 (N1–N9). Many different combinations of “H” and “N” proteins are possible. Each combination is considered a different subtype, and can be further broken down into different strains. AI viruses are further classified by their pathogenicity (low or high)—the ability of a particular virus strain to produce disease in domestic chickens.

The H5N8 virus originated in Asia and spread rapidly along wild bird migratory pathways during 2014, including the Pacific flyway. In the Pacific flyway, the H5N8 virus has mixed with North American avian influenza viruses, creating new mixed-origin viruses. These mixed-origin viruses contain the Asian-origin H5 part of the virus, which is highly pathogenic to poultry. The N parts of these viruses came from North American low pathogenic avian influenza viruses.

USDA has identified two mixed-origin viruses in the Pacific Flyway: the H5N2 virus and new H5N1 virus. The new H5N1 virus is not the same virus as the H5N1 virus found in Asia, Europe and Africa that has caused some human illness. Detailed analysis of the virus is underway in cooperation with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. None of these viruses have been identified in humans, nor are expected to pose a public health risk.

For more information about the ongoing avian influenza disease incident in the Pacific Flyway visit the APHIS website. More information about avian influenza can be found on the USDA avian influenza page.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 1:54 pm 
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Map update

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 1:57 pm 
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Highly Pathogenic H5N8 Avian Influenza Confirmed in Commercial Turkey Flock in California
Last Modified: Jan 24, 2015 Print
No immediate public health concern; detected strain is not known to harm humans

Contacts:
Joelle Hayden (301) 851-4040
joelle.r.hayden@aphis.usda.gov
Ed Curlett (301) 851-4052
ed.c.curlett@aphis.usda.gov

WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2015— The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has confirmed the presence of highly pathogenic (HPAI) H5N8 avian influenza in a commercial turkey flock in Stanislaus County, California. This is the first finding of HPAI in commercial poultry during the ongoing disease incident in the Pacific Flyway. No human cases of these avian influenza viruses have been detected in the United States, Canada, or internationally, and there continues to be no public health concern.

Samples from the flock, which experienced increased mortality, were tested at the California Animal Health & Food Safety Laboratory System (CAHFS) and the APHIS National Veterinary Services Laboratories in Ames, Iowa confirmed the finding. APHIS is partnering closely with the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA), which has quarantined the facility. APHIS and CDFA have initiated an incident command response, and APHIS will assist CDFA in depopulating the remaining birds on the property to prevent the spread of the disease. Birds from the involved flock will not enter the food system.

H5N8 has not been shown to present a health risk to the public. As a reminder, the proper handling and cooking of poultry and eggs to an internal temperature of 165 ˚F kills bacteria and viruses.

Federal and State partners are working jointly on additional surveillance and testing in the nearby area, following existing avian influenza response plans. These plans also will include preventing the movement of risky animals or products out of the immediate area to prevent further disease spread. The United States has the strongest AI surveillance program in the world, and USDA is working with its partners to actively look for the disease in commercial poultry operations, live bird markets, and in migratory wild bird populations.

USDA will be notifying the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) of this detection as part of USDA’s ongoing reporting of all HPAI findings. USDA also continues to communicate with trading partners to encourage adherence to OIE standards and minimize trade impacts. OIE trade guidelines call on countries to base trade restrictions on sound science and, whenever possible, limit restrictions to those animals and animal products within a defined region that pose a risk of spreading disease of concern.

These virus strains can travel in wild birds without them appearing sick. People should avoid contact with sick/dead poultry or wildlife. If contact occurs, wash your hands with soap and water and change clothing before having any contact with healthy domestic poultry and birds.

All bird owners, whether commercial producers or backyard enthusiasts, should continue to practice good biosecurity, prevent contact between their birds and wild birds, and to report sick birds or unusual bird deaths to State/Federal officials, either through your state veterinarian or through USDA’s toll-free number at 1-866-536-7593. Additional information on biosecurity for backyard flocks can be found at healthybirds.aphis.usda.gov

Additional background:

Avian influenza (AI) is caused by an influenza type A virus which can infect poultry (such as chickens, turkeys, pheasants, quail, domestic ducks, geese, and guinea fowl) and is carried by free flying waterfowl such as ducks, geese and shorebirds. AI viruses are classified by a combination of two groups of proteins: hemagglutinin or “H” proteins, of which there are 16 (H1–H16), and neuraminidase or “N” proteins, of which there are 9 (N1–N9). Many different combinations of “H” and “N” proteins are possible. Each combination is considered a different subtype, and can be further broken down into different strains. AI viruses are further classified by their pathogenicity (low or high)—the ability of a particular virus strain to produce disease in domestic chickens.

The H5N8 virus originated in Asia and spread rapidly along wild bird migratory pathways during 2014, including the Pacific flyway. In the Pacific flyway, the H5N8 virus has mixed with North American avian influenza viruses, creating new mixed-origin viruses. These mixed-origin viruses contain the Asian-origin H5 part of the virus, which is highly pathogenic to poultry. The N parts of these viruses came from North American low pathogenic avian influenza viruses.

USDA has identified two mixed-origin viruses in the Pacific Flyway: the H5N2 virus and new H5N1 virus. The new H5N1 virus is not the same virus as the H5N1 virus found in Asia, Europe and Africa that has caused some human illness. Detailed analysis of the virus is underway in cooperation with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. None of these viruses have been identified in humans, nor are expected to pose a public health risk.

For more information about the ongoing avian influenza disease incident in the Pacific Flyway visit the APHIS website. More information about avian influenza can be found on the USDA avian influenza page.

http://www.aphis.usda.gov/wps/portal/ap ... VAbiDHEw!/

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 2:10 pm 
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Update on Avian Influenza Findings in the Pacific Flyway
Last Modified: Jan 23, 2015 Print
The United States Department of Agriculture has confirmed several findings of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in the Pacific flyway since mid-December. These findings are limited to wild birds, backyard poultry flocks that have access to the outdoors, and captive wild birds. These viruses have NOT been found in any commercial poultry in the United States. Commercial poultry producers follow strict biosecurity practices and raise their birds in very controlled environments. There is no immediate public health concern as a result of these detections.
Image
Backyard Poultry Findings Confirmed by USDA’s National Veterinary Services Laboratories Include:

Image

Captive Wild Bird Findings Confirmed by USDA’s National Veterinary Services Laboratories:



Wild Bird Findings confirmed by USDA’s National Veterinary Services Laboratories are available here.
http://www.aphis.usda.gov/wildlife_dama ... STATES.pdf

The findings are part of our increased AI surveillance in the Pacific Flyway and increased outreach to backyard poultry enthusiasts.

USDA is coordinating closely with its partners, including Washington, Oregon and California, Nevada, Utah, and Idaho State officials, the U.S. Department of the Interior and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, on avian influenza surveillance, reporting, and control efforts. The United States has the strongest AI surveillance program in the world, where we actively look for the disease and provide 100% compensation to affected producers to encourage reporting.

USDA continues to report these findings to the World Animal Health Organization (OIE) as part of the ongoing Pacific Flyway avian influenza incident. USDA is working with trading partners to minimize trade impacts on poultry and poultry products as much as possible.

All bird owners, whether commercial producers or backyard enthusiasts, need to continue practicing good biosecurity, preventing contact between their birds and wild birds, and reporting sick birds or unusual bird deaths to State/Federal officials, either through your state veterinarian or through USDA’s toll-free number at 1-866-536-7593. Additional information on biosecurity for backyard flocks can be found at healthybirds.aphis.usda.gov

While HPAI viruses have not been found in commercial poultry, USDA emphasizes that poultry, poultry products and wild birds (see biosecurity and wild birds) are safe to eat if they are properly handled and cooked to a temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Background Information

The H5N8 virus originated in Asia and spread rapidly along wild bird migratory pathways during 2014, including the Pacific flyway. In the Pacific flyway, the H5N8 virus has mixed with North American avian influenza viruses, creating new mixed-origin viruses. This is not unexpected. These mixed-origin viruses contain the Asian-origin H5 part of the virus, which is highly pathogenic to poultry. The N parts of these viruses came from North American low pathogenic avian influenza viruses.

USDA has identified two mixed-origin viruses in the Pacific Flyway: the H5N2 virus and new H5N1 virus. The new H5N1 virus is not the same virus as the H5N1 virus found in Asia that has caused some human illness. The new H5N1 virus is not expected to be a human-health risk, but rather to have the same or a lower risk than H5N8. Detailed analysis of the virus is underway in cooperation with CDC.

http://www.aphis.usda.gov/wps/portal/ap ... fic_flyway

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 6:07 pm 
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Avian flu confirmed in commercial turkey flock in California
The Associated Press
January 24, 2015 Updated 49 minutes ago

WASHINGTON — Federal agriculture officials say they have found avian influenza in a commercial turkey flock in central California.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture said Saturday that the facility in Stanislaus County has been quarantined and birds from the affected flock will not enter the food system.

Testing occurred after the flock experienced a spike in deaths.

Officials say there is no immediate public health concern and the detected strain — H5N8 — is not known to harm humans.

The bird flu strain H5N1 ravaged poultry across Asia in 2003 and is more easily spread among humans.

Read more here: http://www.fresnobee.com/2015/01/24/434 ... rylink=cpy

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 9:01 pm 
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Commentary

http://www.recombinomics.com/News/01241 ... al_CA.html

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2015 2:02 am 
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Avian flu found in Foster Farms turkey flock near Waterford
Strain is harmless to humans, officials say

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
01/24/2015 7:55 PM 01/24/2015 8:54 PM

A strain of avian flu harmless to humans has been found at a Foster Farms turkey facility near Waterford. The company’s website says the firm’s early-detection program caught the outbreak in a single, rural turkey ranch, which has been quarantined and the birds to be humanely killed.

Federal agriculture officials said the strain detected is H5N8, which is not known to harm humans. The similarly named bird flu strain H5N1 ravaged poultry across Asia in 2003 and is more easily spread among humans. Testing occurred after the flock experienced a spike in deaths.

“The good news is it isn’t a human issue, but it is an industry issue because it can wipe out the flock fairly quickly,” said Bill Mattos, president of the Modesto-based California Poultry Federation. Mattos estimated the area-wide toll from an outbreak could affect up to 200,000 birds.

“We’ve been watching for this since those cases in British Columbia, Canada, a few weeks back,” Mattos said. As wild birds migrate along the Pacific Flyway, they bring the deadly disease with them, spreading it where they land or where droppings fall. He urged those with small backyard blocks to keep their birds in coops this winter. Infected birds will die quickly, he said.

In mid-December, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported finding the same strain in guinea fowl and chickens from a 100-bird backyard poultry flock in Winston, Ore. Foster Farms said it reported the outbreak to the USDA. It may be the first U.S. commercial outbreak.

The Foster Farms statement says: “According to USDA policy, the ranch was quarantined and will be humanely depopulated by the USDA and Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) to prevent introduction to migratory and commercial flocks. No poultry products in the marketplace are impacted.”

According to the website, Foster Farms increased bio-security measures at all its West Coast facilities as soon as the other incidents were seen, working with agricultural and veterinary leaders on prevention measures.

“To further protect the health of its poultry and ensure the safety of its products, Foster Farms has long employed strict and industry-leading biosecurity practices including isolation of poultry farms, traffic control and sanitation. The company has maintained a continuous testing program for avian influenza since 2000. Foster Farms is committed to providing premium quality poultry products that are healthy, delicious and safe,” the statement concludes.

“This company has a very sophisticated process in place to handle this,” Mattos said. “It’s one ranch. It’s been locked down with just the one employee there. We’re just trying to keep it encapsulated.”

The outbreak may cause further export problems, however. China stopped importing American poultry products as soon as the outbreak surfaced. Mattos said Stanislaus County farms export only about 1 percent of their poultry, but nationwide some 30 percent of the flocks are sent abroad.

Read more here: http://www.modbee.com/news/local/articl ... rylink=cpy

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2015 2:05 am 
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FOSTER FARMS’ EARLY DETECTION PROGRAM IDENTIFIES AVIAN INFLUENZA IN SINGLE TURKEY FLOCK
USDA confirms no public health concern, part of ongoing incidents along Pacific Flyway since December 2014

1/24/2015
LIVINGSTON, Calif. -- Foster Farms maintains an ongoing early detection program for avian influenza as part of its stringent testing and biosecurity program. As part of this surveillance, Foster Farms determined the presence of avian influenza in a single, rural turkey ranch in Stanislaus County. The company informed the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). According to USDA policy, the ranch was quarantined and will be humanely depopulated by the USDA and Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) to prevent introduction to migratory and commercial flocks. No poultry products in the marketplace are impacted. While the disease presents a risk to avian species, the USDA said, “There is no public health concern.”

Since late 2014, ongoing avian influenza incidents have been detected in wild waterfowl and backyard poultry operations along the Pacific Flyway. As a results, Foster Farms increased biosecurity measures at all West Coast facilities and is actively partnering with state and national agricultural and veterinary leaders to prevent potential avian exposure. To further protect the health of its poultry and ensure the safety of its products, Foster Farms has long employed strict and industry leading biosecurity practices including isolation of poultry farms, traffic control and sanitation. The company has maintained a continuous testing program for avian influenza since 2000. Foster Farms is committed to providing premium quality poultry products that are healthy, delicious and safe.

For more information, please contact the USDA or the
National Turkey Federation.

About Foster Farms

Since 1939, West Coast families have depended on Foster Farms for premium quality chicken products. Family-owned and operated, the company continues its legacy of excellence and commitment to quality established by its founders, Max and Verda Foster. Foster Farms specializes in fresh, all natural chicken products free of preservatives, additives or injected sodium enhancers. Based in California's Central Valley, with ranches also in the Pacific Northwest, the company's fresh chicken is produced in or near each region served and delivered fresh within 48 hours. Foster Farms also produces delicious pre-marinated, ready-to-cook and fully cooked products that meet the quality and convenience needs of today's home cooks, retailers, warehouse clubs and foodservice customers.

Food safety is Foster Farms' highest priority and the company would like to remind consumers to always follow safe handling, preparation and storage guidelines for the preparation of fresh poultry products. All fresh poultry products should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit as measured by a meat thermometer. Visit www.fosterfarms.com to learn more.

http://www.fosterfarms.com/about/press/ ... ase_id=197

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2015 2:17 am 
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Avian Influenza Found on Remote California Turkey Ranch
January 24, 2015
Washington, DC
Americans can continue to enjoy turkey products with full confidence, according to the National Turkey Federation.

“USDA’s effective response to target avian influenza at a remote central California turkey ranch underscores why consumers can be secure in the fundamental safety of the food supply and continue to enjoy turkey,” said Lisa Wallenda Picard, vice president of scientific and regulatory affairs for the National Turkey Federation.

“Though this strain of avian influenza can be very harmful to poultry, it is not known to cause illness in people,” she said.

Upon detection of this AI strain on the ranch, USDA and California state officials immediately quarantined the facility to protect other flocks. The turkeys will be humanely euthanized and disposed of under federal supervision of the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). Foster Farms’ ongoing monitoring and early detection system led to prompt identification and action.

USDA officials have made clear that this strain of avian influenza is confined exclusively to birds. The department also said this is part of an ongoing AI incident in the Pacific Flyway where the disease has been detected in migratory wild birds. Further, ongoing surveillance and early detection of this and other strains ensures the protection of humans from avian influenza. All affected poultry are prohibited from entering the marketplace.

Consumers are reminded, however, that all raw meat and poultry should be properly handled and cooked in all circumstances. For turkey, products should be cooked to 165 degrees Fahrenheit, as measured by a meat thermometer.



Read USDA's news release from APHIS

More information from about Avian Influenza at aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/birdbiosecurity/AI/ at USDA.

http://www.eatturkey.com/pressroom/avia ... rkey-ranch

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