bird flu

Dairy worker in Michigan has bird flu in second case of cow-to-human infection

A worker on a Michigan dairy farm contracted a mild case of H5 bird flu from infected cattle — the second cow-to-human infection since bird flu was first identified in dairy cattle in late March — said the Centers for Disease Control on Wednesday. The risk to the public remains low, said Nirav Shah, the CDC’s principal deputy director.

USDA study shows cooking kills bird flu virus in meat

In tests conducted by USDA scientists, the H5N1 bird flu virus did not survive in hamburgers cooked to internal temperatures of 145 and 160 degrees Fahrenheit, said the Agriculture Department on Thursday. “These results validate that [Food Safety and Inspection Service] recommended cooking temperatures are sufficient to kill H5N1 in meat,” it said.

USDA and HHS allot $199 million to quash bird flu threat to cattle and humans

The Biden administration poured $199 million into the fight against the H5N1 bird flu virus, which was identified in cattle for the first time seven weeks ago, a worrisome step closer to people. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said dairy farmers are eligible for up to $28,000 in USDA aid in three months to help eradicate the virus from their herds, and Health Secretary Xavier Becerra announced new funding among public health agencies to "test, treat, prevent" the virus from spreading.

CDC urges states to give PPE to farmworkers as bird flu safeguard

States should open their stockpiles of personal protective equipment for distribution to farmworkers, with top priority for dairy farms where cows are infected with the H5N1 bird flu virus, said a Centers for Disease Control official. Meanwhile, the Agriculture Department confirmed six additional cases of bird flu in cattle on Thursday, ending a 12-day pause in new cases.

‘Absolute barrier’ against spread of bird flu virus is impossible, says Califf

The agriculture and food industry is entering an era of stepped-up precautions against the spread of the H5N1 bird flu virus now that it has appeared in cattle for the first time, said FDA commissioner Robert Califf at a Senate hearing on Wednesday. “Unfortunately, there is no absolute barrier that can be created,” he said.

CDC: Texas farmworker only person known to contract bird flu from cattle

At least 200 people have been monitored for possible exposure to the H5N1 bird flu virus and 30 people have been tested, but a dairy worker in Texas is the only person known to contract the disease from cattle, said the Centers for Disease Control. "No additional human cases have been detected" since bird flu was discovered for the first time in cattle six weeks ago.

USDA is testing ground beef for bird flu virus

Agriculture Department scientists are conducting three beef safety studies following the first-ever discovery of bird flu in dairy cows a month ago, said a USDA spokesperson on Monday. The studies include tests of ground beef purchased at grocery stores in states with infected herds.

FDA: Bird flu viral fragments in milk were dead; pasteurization works

Although fragments of the H5N1 bird flu virus were found in one-fifth of milk purchased in grocery stores, a new round of high-precision testing "did not detect any live, infectious virus" and reaffirmed that the commercial milk supply is safe, said the FDA. (No paywall)

USDA assesses vaccine to protect cattle from bird flu virus

The Agriculture Department said its research agency “has begun to assess the potential to develop an effective vaccine” against the H5N1 bird flu virus in cattle, although it warned that it is too early to say how long the process would take. The virus has so far infected 29 dairy herds in eight states, though there have been no detections in commercial beef herds since the disease was identified in cattle in late March.

USDA: Test for bird flu before interstate transport of cattle

Michigan officials said the H5N1 bird flu virus has infected three additional dairy herds in the state, just as the USDA recommended farmers test their herds for the virus before moving cattle between states. The tests "should both give us more ... information and should mitigate further state-to-state spread between herds," said the USDA's animal health agency.

Hog farmers hope to fly past bird flu

Bird flu has infected more than 200 mammals since outbreaks began two years ago, from a polar bear in Alaska to a red fox in Maine, but "it's not been a problem" for hog farmers, said Scott Hays, past president of the National Pork Producers Council, on Monday. "I don't anticipate it being an issue for our industry, but [it's] certainly a watch-out for us."

Bird flu infects two more dairy herds, says USDA

Dairy herds in Kansas and New Mexico are infected with the H5N1 bird flu virus, raising the U.S. total to 15 herds in six states, said the Agriculture Department on Thursday. Texas has the most infected herds, with seven, followed by Kansas with three and New Mexico with two.

CDC: Bird flu virus lacks changes to make it a greater threat to people

Samples of the H5N1 bird flu virus that has infected dairy cattle and a dairy worker retain avian genetic characteristics and “for the most part lack changes that would make them better able to infect mammals,” said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in a technical update. “The overall risk to human health associated with the ongoing HPAI A(H5) outbreaks in poultry and detections in wild birds and cattle remains low,” said the CDC.

First time: Bird flu spreads from cattle to human in Texas

A Texas patient tested positive for the bird flu virus after exposure to dairy cattle believed to be carrying the disease — the first known instance of cattle-to-human transmission in the United States, said public health officials on Monday. The patient reported eye redness, consistent with conjunctivitis, as the only symptom and was recovering, said the Centers for Disease Control.

Bird flu found in dairy herds in five states

Bird flu, which killed more than 82 million birds in U.S. domestic flocks in the past two years, has appeared in dairy herds in Idaho, Kansas, Michigan, New Mexico, and Texas, said federal officials. The outbreaks, affecting a relatively small number of cattle, are not expected to affect milk supply or prices at the grocery store.

Bird flu found in dairy cows in Texas and Kansas

The USDA announced Monday that unpasteurized milk samples from sick cattle at two dairy farms in Kansas and one in Texas, as well as an oropharyngeal swab from another dairy in Texas, tested positive for Highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI).

Grocery prices to edge downward in 2024, says USDA forecast

After two years of higher-than-normal grocery inflation, retail food prices are headed for their first year-over-year decline since 2017, said USDA economists on Thursday. Grocery prices would be an average of 0.4 percent lower this year than in 2023, led by falling prices for pork, eggs, fresh vegetables, and cereal and bakery products.

USDA has spent $1 billion fighting bird flu

Since bird flu outbreaks began nearly two years ago, the USDA has spent slightly more than $1 billion to compensate farmers for lost flocks and to suppress the spread of the viral disease, said a spokesperson for the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service on Monday. The largest outlay was $715 million to producers, growers, and integrators in indemnities for depopulated birds and eggs.

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