Last year, the poultry industry saw the largest outbreak of avian influenza in history, with the disease eliciting nationwide concern from producers, consumers, and government officials alike. Dr. John Glisson, of the US Poultry and Egg Association (USPOULTRY), was on hand during the 2016 International Production and Processing Expo (IPPE) to discuss the current state of the outbreak, and how the industry is moving forward.
While all traces of last year’s initial outbreak were gone by June, concerns have already been raised in 2016 as a second outbreak swept through ten farms in southern Indiana earlier this month. The impact of the second influenza outbreak, however, didn’t hold nearly the impact of the first.
“All of the affected farms were found very quickly, the birds were euthanized quickly and the farms cleaned up very quickly, so as we speak today, we have no influenza in the country,” said Glisson. “We learned a lot from the big outbreak last year: how to respond faster, more efficiently, more thoroughly, and all of those lessons were applied in southern Indiana, and i’m happy to report that it worked like a charm. So yeah, we took it on the chin last year, but we learned a lot of lessons from it, and those lessons are really helping us and our response.”
The industry has made significant investments into researching the disease, as well as management practices to avoid, recognize, and respond to any future outbreaks that may occur. The biosecurity advancements made by the poultry industry throughout the year are undoubtedly some of the most advanced and efficient in history.
“We can’t predict the future, and we hope we don’t have anymore outbreaks, but we aren’t naive, we’re very prepared to have more, and have a very active, aggressive surveillance monitoring program to find it if its there, so we’re prepared for it and we know what to do if it does come back,” said Glisson. “I think the Indiana experience was an example of how these situations will be handled in the future. The cooperation between the companies, the state agencies in Indiana, and the federal government was really something remarkable.”
Listen to Chuck’s full interview with Dr. Glisson here:
Interview with Dr. John Glisson, USPOULTRY
Photos from IPPE: 2016 IPPE Photo Album