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Avian Flu News Tracker
posted by admin on 28/04/06
Thursday, April 27.
3:40 p.m.: Russia's Agriculture Ministry said it canceled all import licenses for poultry because of violations of import regulations, the AP reported. Though, Agriculture Minister Alexei Gordeyev said the license cancellation was more a technical issue and that the problem should be resolved in the next few weeks.
"We have not stopped issuing licenses, we are simply replacing old documents with new ones," Interfax News Agency quoted Gordeyev as saying. Russian poultry farmers have been demanding import restrictions and held a demonstration last week in Moscow. Earlier this month, Gordeyev announced a 30% cut in imports to help farmers cope with consumer worries about bird flu.
12:30 p.m.: Dan Burrows of MarketWatch reports. Shares of chicken producers Tyson Foods and Pilgrim's Pride rebounded after a morning selloff that followed Russia's decision to ban poultry imports through the end of the year. Russia is the biggest foreign buyer of American chicken. Earlier, Tyson shares had dropped more than 10% and Pilgrim's Pride stock skidded 18%. The ban and subsequent decline in share price prompted Stephens Inc. to upgrade its rating on Tyson stock to "overweight" from "equal weight," citing a buying opportunity.
11 a.m.: If a global pandemic erupts, face masks should be a last resort because it's unclear how much they would help prevent a bird-flu infection, according to the Institute of Medicine, an arm of the National Academies, the nation's most prestigious science organization. If masks are used, they shouldn't be used more than once, because if the virus gets on the outside of the mask and the wearer or someone else touches the infected part of the mask, it could spread the disease. Some pandemic specialists fear that using a face mask could give people a false sense of security about the disease. "We don't want to say, 'Don't use it,' but don't expect to be fully protected if you do use it. That's a tough public health message to get out," said Donald Burke of Johns Hopkins University, co-chair of the IOM panel.
10:05 a.m.: British officials are slaughtering thousands of chickens after the H7 strain of bird flu turned up in dead chickens found on a poultry farm near Dereham, Norfolk, 150 miles from London. Officials said further tests are being conducted. Earlier this month, the deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu was detected in a dead whooper swan in Scotland.
9:45 a.m.: Kazakhstan doesn't have bird flu. The country's chief epidemiologist said poultry that died earlier this week in the central part of the country died of something other than bird flu. Initial tests on ten dead hens, one live hen and one duck had revealed antibodies for bird flu.
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