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Bird flu outbreak in Japan has limited market impact

by 5m Editor
12 January 2004, at 12:00am

JAPAN - The outbreak of bird flu in west Japan's Yamaguchi Prefecture and the resulting slaughter of all chickens in the region has had limited impact on the domestic market, the farm ministry said Monday.

Bird flu outbreak in Japan has limited impact on domestic market - JAPAN - The outbreak of bird flu in west Japan's Yamaguchi Prefecture and the resulting slaughter of all chickens in the region has had limited impact on the domestic market, the farm ministry said Monday.

The poultry industry in Yamaguchi Prefecture accounts for less than 2 percent of total production of eggs and chicken meat in Japan, so the effect on the national market has barely been noticeable and will be very limited, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.

The ministry also said there have been no known cases anywhere in the world of humans acquiring the virus from consuming the eggs or meat of infected chickens.

The virus triggered an outbreak of bird flu in South Korea last year. It also killed a veterinarian in the Netherlands the same year.

Japanese farms raised a total of about 240 million chickens fortheir eggs or meat, according to a 2002 poll by the ministry.

Yamaguchi Prefecture accounted for only about 4.17 million, or 1.7 percent, of that total. It produced 47,000 tons, or 1.9 percent, of the national production of chicken eggs and 1.2 percent, or about 6.9 million chickens, for meat.

Any potential ban on Japan's poultry exports would not have a severe effect on the national economy, the ministry believes, as Japan exported only 2,900 tons of chicken meat and 30 tons of eggs in 2002.

Kentucky Fried Chicken Japan Ltd., which uses domestic chickens for all its deep-fried chicken products, said it is now looking into whether it has any shipments from farms in Yamaguchi Prefecture

Source: Xinhua via Comtex - 12th January 2004

5m Editor