NEWS

Avian flu in Fraser Valley unlikely to spread: B.C. Poultry Association

12/03/2014 03:08 EST | Updated 02/02/2015 05:59 EST
The president of the B.C. Poultry Association has confidence security measures will prevent the spread of avian flu after it was discovered on two farms in the Fraser Valley.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency confirmed the virus at a turkey farm in Abbotsford and a broiler chicken breeding facility in Chilliwack on Tuesday. Thousands of birds will be euthanized.

"When something like this happens, those farms are quarantined so nothing can come on or off of those places," Ray Nickel with the B.C. Poultry Association told The Early Edition's Rick Cluff.

"The farms that are in the surrounding area go into what we call a lockdown."

In 2004, millions of birds were killed after an outbreak of the virus. 

Nickel said since that outbreak, new security measures have been put in place, and those new rules have already been proven to work.

"We managed through another outbreak in 2009 which hardly hit the map because of the way it was done," he said.

Turkeys from the farm in Abbotsford were destined to be sold for Christmas dinner.

Nickel said consumers shouldn't be worried about the quality of their meat.

"This is about bird health, this isn't a human issue as far as buying your product," he said.

The virus does not pose a risk to food products that are properly cooked.

To hear more about the avian flu outbreak, click on the audio clip labelled: Ray Nickel confident avian flu won't spread, or watch the video titled: Avian flu detected at 2 B.C. poultry farms.

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