Latest Salmonella outbreak linked to batch of British chicks
Published 06/05/2015 | 02:30
A salmonella outbreak on 19 poultry farms has resulted in the cull of 850,000 birds.
While a statement from the Department of Agriculture said that officials were cautiously optimistic that the worst of the outbreak was over, they had no comment on whether the disease had resulted in any human illness.
"There is no food safety risk arsing from this Salmonella enteriditis outbreak, as all (19) infected flocked have been subject to appropiate controls," it said in a statement.
It added that there appeared to be two clusters of infected farms, and that these "appear not to be related".
All three of the main chicken processors south of the Border have been affected.
Manor Farm's Managing director, Vincent Carton, said that processors would be "taking the hit", but he admitted that some of his growers had still to be compensated for their depopulated birds.
He insisted that the cull would not have any impact on the supply of Irish chicken, which is running a typcial weekly kill of 1.5m birds.
IFA poultry chairman, Nigel Renehan, who was one of the farmers affected, said that he was "seriously distraught" with the disease pressures that the industry was under.
"We know that we have a problem with diseases like camplyobacter, and we know that the Minister for Agriculture wants it sorted," said Mr Renehan, who farms in Monaghan.
"But it would take 10c extra per bird to upgrade facilities on farms. We've asked for it, but nobody is interested. It's a real mess because it's just not in it anymore.
"I'd shut the houses in the morning if I could, but I've got borrowings to service on them. Many are in the same boat as me," said the downbeat farm leader.
While investigations into the source of the outbreak are on-going, many of the infected birds are linked with a consignment of chicks from a hatchery in Wrexham in Britain.