Poultry, egg sales fall 90% in Georgia on bird flu fears

GEORGIA - Poultry and egg sales in Georgia have plummeted by 90% in the last few days due to the population's fears of a bird flu outbreak, the parliamentary committee for healthcare and social issues said Monday.

Georgia borders on Turkey, in which bird flu has killed four people according to the latest figures, and where outbreaks of the virus have been registered in 27 provinces.

The Georgian parliamentary committee held a meeting dedicated to bird flu control measures, attended by Health, Labor and Social Affairs Minister Lado Chipashvili, Agriculture Minister Mikheil Svimonishvili, and leaders of sanitary services and commercial organizations.

Svimonishvili said losses to the poultry industry were a cause of serious concern.

"Poultry production was until recently one of the few agricultural sectors in Georgia experiencing steady economic growth," he said.

The parliamentary committee's deputy chairman, David Sagenelidze, said funds should be allocated from Georgia's budget to compensate the population in case of an outbreak of the virus, and potential bird culling. The spread of the virus was causing panic in the population, he said.

Source: RIA Novosti
calendar icon 17 January 2006
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