INDIA: The Indian government has decided to take necessary measures to contain the spread of avian flu in different states. Till now, avian flu has been confirmed in around seven states including Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Gujarat, Delhi, Maharashtra, and Chattisgarh.
With more states confirming cases of avian flu and many still probing the unexplained deaths of crows, wild birds, and poultry, the Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying has sought increased monitoring of potential hot spots for the diseases. The department has also asked the affected states to ensure that the PPE kits and accessories are available to dispose of the carcasses and bird waste.
Meanwhile, avian flu has been confirmed in 13 districts of Madhya Pradesh. Along with that, around 1000 crows have been found dead in 23 districts. The death of poultry birds has raised concerns about whether it would be safe to consume chicken and eggs at this time.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), H5N1 is a type of influenza virus that causes ‘highly infectious, severe respiratory disease’ in birds. This virus is responsible for causing avian flu.
The organization has also said that it is safe to eat chicken as long as it is properly cleaned and cooked. As the H5N1 virus is sensitive to heat, normal temperatures used for cooking (which is around 70 degrees Celsius) can kill the virus.
In a statement, WHO said, “As a standard precaution, WHO recommends that poultry, poultry products, and wild game birds should always be prepared following good hygienic practices and that poultry meat should be properly cooked”.