Minister Bibeau meets with agricultural stakeholders to discuss the impacts of highly pathogenic avian influenza

OTTAWA (ON), April 29, 2022 /CNW/ – “This year has been unprecedented for highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza (HPAI) worldwide. By working together, we can prevent the spread of disease and minimize the impact on poultry producers across Canada.

Today, I had another meeting with stakeholders from the agricultural sector to discuss the state of the situation on commercial poultry farms and the impacts on the processing sector. They told me about the devastating effects of the disease on production, animal movement, and the import and export of their products and by-products.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is working closely with poultry owners and producers to respond to HPAI across the country, prevent its spread and minimize impacts on industry and trade. During these challenging times, growers, CFIA staff, and provincial and federal governments are working together to effectively respond to the outbreak and work towards recovery.

When domestic birds are suspected of being infected with HPAI, the CFIA takes immediate action to control the disease. The typical response includes movement restrictions and quarantines, investigation, humane depopulation of affected birds, and thorough cleaning and disinfection of infected premises. In addition, when depopulation and destruction of objects have been ordered, the CFIA compensates eligible owners.

It is important to remember that avian influenza does not pose a food safety risk. Canadian poultry products are safe to eat and continuing to buy them is the best way to support poultry producers and processors during this difficult time when they are under great pressure.

This outbreak reminds poultry producers to maintain strict biosecurity measures at all times to prevent the introduction and spread of disease. This extends to small producers who may only have a few backyard birds. They too should change their shoes when entering poultry houses and keep their birds indoors as much as possible. An outbreak in a small flock can lead to the establishment of control zones that will affect the entire poultry industry. In addition, small producers located in the control areas must also have a permit to give away or sell their products. It is very important to know the signs of HPAI and any suspected cases should be reported to the CFIA immediately.

I know this is a particularly stressful time for from Canada poultry producers. Detecting and responding to an outbreak can be emotionally draining. I remind everyone to call for help when they are going through a difficult mental health situation. Organizations like “Do More Ag” and “In the heart of agricultural families” know the realities of farmers, women and men, and can offer their help. Farm Credit Canada’s Rooted in the Force initiative lists several resources.

I want to thank from Canada poultry producers for their perseverance and cooperation during this outbreak. Their vigilance is essential to support from Canada response to HPAI. We will continue to work closely with industry stakeholders and farmers to minimize impacts and support them with recovery measures. »

– The Honorable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

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SOURCE Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA)


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Lana T. Arthur