May 12, 2021


Japan has culled a record 9.87 million chickens and ducks in recent bird flu outbreak


Japan has culled a record 9.87 million chickens and ducks in the recent outbreak of the highly pathogenic bird flu in the country, which was detected in 18 prefectures including Chiba and Ibaraki, key poultry farming areas, The Japan Times reported.


The total culled poultry was higher than the previous record of 1.83 million birds culled between autumn 2010 and spring 2011.


The record culling is said to be cause of surging domestic egg prices.


One of Japan's biggest producer of chicken eggs, Chiba prefecture, removed restrictions on transferring eggs and chickens from farms on April 20. About 4.56 million chickens were culled in Chiba prefecture, or a third of all egg-laying hens.


The market price for medium sized chicken eggs at JA.Z-Tamago Co, an egg seller in Japan, was JPY 250 per kilogram on Friday, 50% higher than in 2020.


Japan's Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries has called on poultry farmers to implement thorough virus prevention measures in preparation for next season, such as closing off small openings, disinfecting facilities and checking all bird nests.


Many chicken and duck farms were found to have openings that allowed the entry of small animals. The virus was thought to have entered Japan by migrating birds from Eurasian Continent and spread by small animals that came into contact with such birds' droppings as well as people and vehicles entering and leaving chicken farms.


The ministry has also launched discussions for chicken farms to abide by central government hygiene control standards as a condition to receive subsidies.


- The Japan Times