April 23, 2015
Federal officials say that a recent outbreak of avian influenza in limited areas of the U.S. poses a low health risk to people. They also advise that the domestic food supply is not in jeopardy.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has confirmed that the influenza has been detected in wild birds and specific domestic poultry flocks in several Midwestern states, Oregon and Washington. According to current reports, the outbreak began last December.
Experts at both the USDA and the Centers for Disease Control report that no evidence of human infection has been detected because of the outbreak.
Poultry products cooked according to normal temperature guidelines are safe and nutritious to eat. Infected domestic flocks will not enter the food system.
John Clifford, the USDA’s chief veterinarian, said the agency is taking every available action to suppress the outbreak. “We are coordinating closely with state and other federal departments on rigorous surveillance, reporting and control efforts,” Clifford explained.
For more information, visit http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome?contentid=avian_influenza.html.