Minnesota Poultry Farmers Warily Watch Bird Flu Outbreaks
Bird flu has been found in 40 countries, putting WHO on high alert
ST. PAUL (AP) – Poultry farmers in Minnesota are cautiously watching the spread of bird flu in Europe and Asia.
Minnesota Public Radio reports that the World Health Organization is on “high alert” because the bird flu virus has been found in 40 countries around the world since last fall and is quickly spreading.
Michael Osterholm, director of the University of Minnesota’s Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, says the spring waterfowl migration will increase the risk of the virus coming to Minnesota.
Outbreaks that occurred in 2015, devastated over 100 Minnesota farms and cost the state economy more than $500 million.
Rembrandt Foods owner Glen Taylor says his company, one of the nation’s largest egg producers, has taken steps to keep out any new virus. Any supply trucks that visit other poultry farms are strictly controlled, and employees are required to unload at an entrance gate, if possible.