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ThePoultrySite Newsletter - 19th April 2004's Weekly Poultry Industry Newsletter's Weekly Poultry Industry Newsletter
Monday 19th April 2004
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Welcome to this week's newsletter

* News Overview (link to ALL this weeks news)

We start in Canada where senior government officials are to meet today to draft a plan for culling and disposing of the 19 million poultry threatened by avian flu in B.C.'s Fraser Valley. The goal is to complete the cull of domestic birds - chickens, ducks, turkeys and geese - by May 21, although that date may change if the flu spreads before then.

British Columbia emergency officials have been given the green light to deal with the avian flu crisis as they see fit. Premier Gordon Campbell says the full measures of the Provincial Emergency Program are now in effect, meaning officials can issue orders without having them cleared by the government.

B.C. Agriculture Minister John van Dongen said Thursday the avian flu in the Fraser Valley is still out of control after new figures show 29 poultry farms are now infected with the virus. The spread continues in spite of bio-security measures.
See also: Daily Avian Influenza Updates

The US is making headway in lifting the bans that some of its leading customers have imposed on U.S. beef and poultry exports because of mad cow and bird diseases, Agriculture Department officials said Friday. Next week, China may announce progress toward reducing restrictions on US poultry, and Mexico is set to announce that it will open its borders to more US poultry.

New regulations that could impact every aspect of the poultry industry in Delaware have been proposed by the state's Department of Agriculture as a means of safeguarding state poultry flocks from diseases such as avian influenza and exotic Newcastle disease.

The Mexican Agriculture Department has said it will lift restrictions on poultry imports from four US states - North Carolina, Maine, Virginia and West Virginia. Restrictions on imports from California, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Texas are to remain in place for the time being, reports

In Japan, scientists warn that the mutation of the Bird Flu virus into a new strain is possible. Despite a series of declarations by prefectural governments in Japan that bird flu has been contained, health experts stressed that precautionary measures should not be relaxed and efforts should be made to boost cooperation among related ministries.

Chicken farm operator Asada Nosan Co. that runs a bird flu-hit farm in Kyoto Prefecture will lay off all of its roughly 200 employees due to financial difficulties, company sources said Saturday.

A local government in western Japan declared an end on Tuesday to the country's two most recent bird flu cases, marking the official conclusion of the outbreak of the disease in Japan three months after it was first reported, according to Reuters.

In China, The Beijing quarantine department completed quarantine of 220 tons of processed chicken, which will be the first batch of chicken products exported to Japan since China fought off bird flu successfully. Japan is China's largest poultry export market. China invited Japanese food experts to inspect 35 recommended poultry processing companies after it fought off bird flu.

Thailand backed away from declaring victory over bird flu last week, saying it need until April 27 to ensure the deadly virus was fully under control. The Agriculture Ministry had planned to announce last week the avian flu epidemic was finally over after it killed eight people and forced the culling of about 35 million chickens. "If we don't see a new outbreak by April 27, Thailand will be totally free of bird flu," said Deputy Agriculture Minister Newin Chidchob.

The Thai poultry industry could be about to restock on a massive scale after the devastation of the avian flu epidemic. The country’s feed industry is set to import cargoes of Argentine soybeans as the country prepares to declare itself free of the deadly virus, writes Anthony Fletcher.

In Vietnam, a project to raise ostriches in the central provinces of Quang Nam and Khanh Hoa has been finalised by a local company. The 600 billion VND project will consist of a feed factory, a meat-processing factory, a leather and craft workshop and a tanning production factory.

The European Commission has introduced TRACES, a new IT system designed to improve the management of animal movements both from outside the EU and within the EU. The system is designed to simplify existing systems and create better tools for managing animal disease outbreaks.

In Cyprus, all eggs sold will need to have a certification stamp on their shell to come into line with EU directives of food safety. “This will be done for traceability", said the Agricultural Department. "For example, if someone contracts salmonella, we will be able to trace back where the egg was made and sold from the code stamp and close the poultry farm down”.

In the UK, the Soil Association has claimed that government figures indicate a substantial increase in the number of eggs containing residues of the drug lasalocid. Lasalocid is an antibiotic which can legally be used in the feed of chickens sold for meat, turkeys, pheasants and quail, but it is not licensed for use for chickens that lay eggs.
See also: FSA response to lasalocid report from the Soil Association

Scientists from the Institute of Food Research (IFR) have found that specific probiotics - beneficial bacteria - can destroy pathogenic bacteria living in the gut of poultry. The discovery could help remove the threat of bacterial food poisoning from the food chain. The team screened thousands of non-pathogenic bacteria and found that Lactobacillus johnsonii cleared Clostridium perfingens, from the gut of chicks.

That's all for this week.

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