H5N1 Outbreak at Cal-Maine Foods, Inc. Poultry Facility in Farwell, Texas

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Cal-Maine Foods, Inc. Poultry Facility in Farwell, Texas Receives Notice of H5N1 Outbreak

Today, Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller confirmed that the Cal-Maine Foods, Inc. poultry facility in Farwell, Texas has received official notice of a positive test for H5N1. This highly pathogenic avian influenza virus poses a significant threat to the poultry industry and requires immediate action to prevent its spread.

Depopulation of Laying Hens and Pullets

In accordance with the guidance provided by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for poultry infections, Cal-Maine Foods, Inc. will be required to depopulate 1.6 million laying hens and 337,000 pullets at their Farwell facility. This decisive measure is necessary to contain the outbreak and protect the health of other poultry in the area.

The depopulation process will account for approximately 3.6% of the company’s total flock as of March 2, 2024. While this is a significant loss for Cal-Maine Foods, Inc., it is crucial to prioritize the well-being of the entire poultry industry and prevent further spread of the H5N1 virus.

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Temporary Cessation of Production and USDA Protocols

As a result of the H5N1 outbreak, production at the Cal-Maine Foods, Inc. poultry facility in Farwell, Texas has temporarily ceased. The company will now initiate the protocols prescribed by the USDA to address the situation effectively.

The USDA protocols include thorough cleaning and disinfection of the affected areas, implementation of biosecurity measures to prevent further contamination, and monitoring the health of the remaining poultry to ensure early detection of any potential cases. These measures are crucial in minimizing the risk of further outbreaks and safeguarding the poultry industry in the region.

Cal-Maine Foods, Inc. is committed to working closely with the USDA and other relevant authorities to address the H5N1 outbreak swiftly and effectively. The company will continue to prioritize the health and safety of its employees, consumers, and the poultry industry as a whole.

The confirmation of a positive test for H5N1 at the Cal-Maine Foods, Inc. poultry facility in Farwell, Texas is a concerning development for the poultry industry. However, with the implementation of the USDA protocols and the depopulation of affected poultry, there is hope for containing the outbreak and preventing its further spread.

Cal-Maine Foods, Inc. remains committed to taking all necessary measures to address the situation and protect the well-being of the poultry industry. By adhering to the guidance provided by the USDA and working in collaboration with relevant authorities, the company aims to minimize the impact of the H5N1 outbreak and ensure the long-term sustainability of the poultry sector in Texas.

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