Written by Tyler R. Etter
Although the United States outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) has been controlled,
and clean-up efforts are nearly finished, trade partners are still restricting the imports of U.S. poultry.
Most of the 18 nations that banned all U.S. poultry have maintained these restrictions, causing nearly
$900 million in lost trade. There are yet another 38 nations with regional restrictions, costing a total of
$4.5 billion to the poultry industry, which constituted 69% of trade in 2014.
Dr. Lisa Ferguson of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) stated that APHIS is
currently visiting trading partners in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. APHIS is updating the nations on
the plan to face any potential avian influenza this fall, as well as issues of vaccination. The primary goal is
to emphasize that the outbreak is under control, and to encourage the nations to lift the trade
Initially trading partners were suspicious of the vaccination of birds, as they believed it showed a lack of
control over the outbreak. Dr. Ferguson stated that as the vaccination strategy, of using vaccines only
when the disease is rapidly spreading in high-density areas, such as the impacts in Minnesota and Iowa.
Minnesota and Iowa are reported to be the only states where cleaning and disinfection are still taking
place. The World Organization of Animal Health will require a 90-Day waiting period after these
processes are completed before trade restrictions can be lifted.