October 23, 2013
Australia assures chicken meat safety despite avian influenza
The detection of avian influenza in an egg production flock near Young, Australia, has no implications for chicken meat safety or consumption, according to Andreas Dubs, executive director of Australian Chicken Meat Federation.
Dubs also announced that the disease strain poses no public health risk to humans while no other chicken meat farms have been infected.
The New South Wales (NSW) Food Authority has confirmed that there are no food safety issues and that poultry and eggs remain safe for consumption.
"The results confirm that this virus is the H7 avian influenza strain, not the highly pathogenic H5N1 strain that has gained worldwide attention," NSW chief veterinary officer, Ian Roth, said.
"I am confident the outbreak will be controlled quickly," Dubs added.
Dubs said that, under the supervision of the NSW DPI, and with the involvement of the Australian Egg Corporation Limited, chickens on the infected egg farm will be slaughtered and disposed safely and humanely.
In the meantime, the farm was placed under quarantine.
"We are confident that the disease will be eliminated quickly, as both industry and government are well prepared for this. Experience is on our side, with several outbreaks of bird flu in the past having been eradicated quickly, so everyone involved knows what needs to be done," said Dubs.