[IWAR] US 'bird flu' possible

From: 7Pillars Partners (partnersat_private)
Date: Sun Jan 25 1998 - 09:34:08 PST

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    Beware bird flu, U.S. poultry industry told
          Copyright  1998 Nando.net
          Copyright  1998 Reuters
       ATLANTA (January 23, 1998 3:55 p.m. EST http://www.nando.net) - A U.S.
       poultry association official urged producers Friday to consider stocking
       up on vaccines to protect their flocks against the avian flu that has
       killed six people in Hong Kong.
       Charles Beard, the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association's vice- president for
       research and technology, said the industry should "buy insurance" by
       purchasing vaccines, even though there is no indication the virus is
       "The big question right now is how much vaccine is needed," Beard told
       the association's International Poultry Exposition meeting. He said
       vaccination, if approved by the U.S. Agriculture Department, could
       prevent major losses in the industry.
       He said the highly pathogenic bird virus had not spread internationally
       since it sickened 18 people last year, but he added that no one really
       knew what would happen in the future.
       "We have got to keep influenza from occurring in commercial poultry,"
       Beard said. He outlined a priority list under which breeder stocks would
       be inoculated first and sufficient egg production would be ensured to
       produce more vaccine.
       David Swayne at the U.S. Agriculture Department's Southeast Poultry
       Research Laboratory said the risk of the flu virus spreading into the
       United States was "negligible."
       He said federal and state authorities performed routine surveys of
       commercial poultry for influenza virus and no poultry or raw poultry
       products were imported into the United States from Hong Kong.
       Swayne said Hong Kong would have a massive program in place by the end
       of the month to screen poultry flocks for a recurrence of the virus.
       Hong Kong authorities killed 1.3 million ducks, chickens and turkeys
       last month in an effort to eradicate the disease.
       Beard said a recurrence of the Hong Kong bird flu in humans could affect
       consumer confidence in domestic poultry supplies.

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