French Bird Flu Outbreak Spreads

French Bird Flu Outbreak SpreadsFrench Bird Flu Outbreak Spreads

France detected a case of highly pathogenic bird flu in the Pyrenees-Atlantiques region on Friday, taking to five the number of regions affected by the outbreak in the country’s southwest. H5N9 avian influenza was confirmed on a farm with 1,500 ducks in the village of Arroses, the agriculture ministry said in an update on its website, Reuters reported. It is the 13th case in an outbreak that started with the detection of H5N1 bird flu in Dordogne on Nov. 24, the first in eight years. It is affecting France’s main foie gras (popular French cuisine) producing region just before demand peaks over the year-end holiday season, although authorities have stressed there is no evidence that bird flu can be transmitted to humans via food. However, France is facing restrictions on poultry products as well as live birds from trading partners including Japan, the world’s largest importer of French foie gras.