The Ministry of Agriculture announced today (Saturday) that another center of avian influenza was discovered in a cluster of laying hens adjacent to Moshav Margaliot in the north of the country. The new cluster, which has about 320,000 laying hens, is also destined for killing.
The Ministry of Agriculture said that there is concern about the possibility of infecting people from infected coops, which are adjacent to residents’ homes. As a result of the outbreaks of bird flu, a shortage of about 14 million eggs per month is expected in the egg market in Israel.
In a situation assessment conducted at the ministry, it was stated that upon receiving the report of a suspicion of bird flu in chicken coops, the Ministry of Agriculture isolated the chicken coops and immediately stopped marketing the eggs. The total number of chicken coops market about 14 million eggs a month in the local market.
The Minister of Agriculture, Oded Forer: “Upon receiving the announcement of another center of bird flu in laying hens in Moshav Margaliot, I instructed the professional team to prepare for the opening of duty-free egg imports immediately, so that Israeli residents will continue to consume the eggs without shortage. The veterinarians will take all measures at their disposal so that the incident does not spread from Margaliot to nearby localities. ”
Since the case of bird flu in the crane-sick reedbed, the veterinary services at the Ministry of Agriculture have been actively monitoring the entire northern coop. The initial suspicion of the disease arose due to increased mortality of chickens at the site. Samples were taken to the laboratory, where the certificate for diagnosis was obtained. Following this, the said veterinary services have taken obligatory steps in order to stop the chain of infection.
All avian influenza events this year, as well as the current one, have involved an H5N1 virus that can cause a low risk of human disease.
The Ministry of Agriculture once again reminds the public to be careful about consuming chicken and egg products only after cooking, since high heat treatment (cooking, baking, frying) destroys all bacteria and viruses in poultry. The ministry notes that this recommendation is valid in the routine, and now even more so. This case joins other recent cases in which H5N1 bird flu has been identified in 60 chicken coops in Moshav Margaliot, Agmon Hahula, Kfar Baruch, Kibbutz Ein Tzurim, Avigdor, Maayan Zvi and Nahalal and other wild birds. In all cases, the treatment of the Ministry of Agriculture has long since ended.