Brazil extends avian flu health emergency for 180 days

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Brazil’s agriculture ministry has extended a national health emergency for another 180 days due to increased detection of the Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) virus in wild birds. , according to a statement on Tuesday.

The highly infectious virus has not yet reached commercial flocks, meaning Brazil’s status as a country free of avian influenza before the World Organization for Animal Health remains, the statement added.

Outbreaks in commercial flocks, which have occurred in major poultry producers such as the United States, may trigger export bans.

Japan temporarily banned Brazilian chicken products from the state of Espirito Santo in late June and from Santa Catarina, Brazil’s second largest chicken producer and exporter, in mid-July.

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“The fight against bird flu is an issue that deserves everyone’s attention, because the spread of the disease can affect different sectors of the country,” the Ministry of Agriculture Carlos Favaro was quoted as saying in the statement. “The extension will give us more security to face this crisis without major risks.”

Brazil, the world’s leading poultry exporter and home to giant meatpackers including BRF ( BRFS3.SA ) and JBS ( JBSS3.SA ), has for the first time confirmed cases of HPAI in wild animals. bird on May 15.

The first health emergency in Brazil was ordered a week ago in a bid to prevent the disease from reaching subsistence and commercial poultry production, as well as to preserve the country’s fauna and human health, the statement said. as

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The ministry said that so far Brazil has had 139 confirmed outbreaks of the disease, including wild birds, live chickens and mammals.