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SA Poultry Association Worried About Avian Flu

The South African Poultry Association (SAPA) said it was quite nervous about the current avian flu situation.

This followed confirmation of Western Cape’s first case of H7 High Pathogenicity Avian Influenza.

The case was reported in George on 12 October.

Avian flu, also known as bird flu, is a highly contagious disease that affects both domestic and wild birds and could kill infected poultry.

Strains of the virus were also detected in Gauteng, Mpumalanga, Limpopo, and Free State.

“The disease is still contained in the one farm in George, and it will take a week or so for us to confirm that it hasn’t spread – that is really what we hope for in this particular case,” said the Poultry Association’s Izaak Breitenbach.

Breitenbach stressed that products on supermarket shelves were safe for consumption.

“The birds were culled. They were not into production yet, so there were no eggs to be destroyed. That means that the product we see on the supermarket shelf is safe,” he assured.

“This is not a disease of short-living birds like broilers and therefore the meat is not contaminated with the virus at all.”