April 29, 2024


Bird flu resurgence sparks egg price surge worldwide


A recent resurgence of avian influenza in poultry facilities across the US, Japan, and various other nations has prompted a renewed increase in egg prices around the world, CNBC reported.


The highly contagious and lethal virus, commonly known as bird flu, has even been detected in dairy herds, exacerbating concerns.


David Anderson, a professor and food economist at Texas A&M University, attributed the significant surge in egg prices to the impact of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) on egg farms. The outbreak has resulted in the loss of chickens and a reduction in egg production.


In the US alone, over 14 million egg-laying chickens perished in November and December due to avian flu. Presently, more than 8 million birds within America's commercial flocks remain infected, according to data from the US Department of Agriculture.


The country's largest chicken egg manufacturer, Cal-Maine Foods, recently halted production and culled over a million of its flock at one of its facilities following a bird flu outbreak.


The repercussions of the bird flu outbreak are not limited to the US. Nan-Dirk Mulder, a senior analyst at Rabobank, highlighted that numerous countries worldwide, including the US, EU, Russia, South Africa, India, and Nigeria, are grappling with historically high egg prices.


In Japan, where egg consumption is substantial and integral to cooking, prices have surged by over 20% since the beginning of the year due to reported cases of bird flu in domestic poultry farms.


Similarly, egg prices have risen in Mexico, Norway, Indonesia, and other regions due to a myriad of factors, including intense heatwaves and increased demand.


Consumers worldwide are adapting to cope with the soaring egg prices by considering alternatives and strategies, such as stocking up on eggs and freezing them for long-term storage.


Beyond bird flu, higher demand for eggs amid soaring meat prices has also contributed to the supply-demand imbalance, further driving up egg prices globally, according to experts.


-      CNBC

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