Canadian Food Inspection Agency

Canadian Food Inspection Agency

November 24, 2010 17:00 ET

Canadian Food Inspection Agency: Avian influenza Confirmed in Manitoba

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 24, 2010) - The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has confirmed the presence of an avian influenza virus in a commercial poultry operation in the Rural Municipality of Rockwood, Manitoba.

Further testing is underway to determine the precise subtype and pathogenicity of the virus. Pathogenicity refers to the severity of the illness caused in birds. Clinical assessment and laboratory analysis to date suggests this is likely a low pathogenic virus.

Avian influenza viruses do not pose risks to food safety when poultry and poultry products are properly handled and cooked. Avian influenza rarely affects humans, unless they are of specific types and there has been close contact with infected birds.

All birds on the infected premises will be humanely euthanized and disposed of, in accordance with provincial environmental regulations and internationally accepted disease control guidelines. Once all birds have been removed, the CFIA will oversee the cleaning and disinfecting of the barns, vehicles, equipment and tools to eliminate any infectious material that may remain.

The CFIA is conducting a thorough epidemiological investigation, including tracing any recent movement of birds, bird products and equipment onto and off of the infected property. To limit any potential virus spread, the CFIA is also applying restrictions on the movement of poultry and poultry products within three kilometres of the infected premises.

Animal health and public health authorities from the Province of Manitoba, local poultry specialists and industry are actively collaborating on the response to avian influenza in the Manitoba poultry operation, and in supporting the producer.

All poultry owners are urged to take an active role in protecting their flocks. This includes employing strict biosecurity measures on their property and immediately reporting sick or dead birds to their veterinarian or the nearest CFIA office. Further information on biosecurity is available on the CFIA website at www.inspection.gc.ca/biosecurity.

The CFIA is notifying the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and international trading partners of this situation.

New information will be provided to the public as it becomes available.

For information on safe food handling, please visit: http://www.inspection.gc.ca/english/fssa/concen/concenrol/rolsafe.shtml

Contact Information

  • Canadian Food Inspection Agency
    Media Relations
    613-773-6600