FOSTER FARMS SUPPORTS NCC INITIATIVE, CONTINUES TO PROTECT FLOCKS THROUGH ESTABLISHED PRACTICES
Routine AI Testing Assures Bird Health and Protection
LIVINGSTON, Calif. – Foster Farms announced today that it has already implemented the avian influenza testing program introduced by the National Chicken Council (NCC) and will continue to test its flocks for any sign of exposure or illness related to potentially hazardous forms of the disease . Foster Farms’ specialists actively participated along with other industry experts in the development of the NCC testing program.
Foster Farms’ avian medicine veterinarians have for many years employed a regular and consistent program of testing to ensure flock health. Poultry flocks raised by Foster Farms are blood tested for avian influenza before they are processed. Foster Farms has never had a case of highly pathogenic avian influenza, and no case of the H5N1 virus as has occurred in other parts of the world has ever been found in the United States.
The initiative by the NCC was introduced today and encourages poultry producers to test flocks at farm facilities using technical procedures approved by the National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP). Participating producers will collaborate with the NCC and the U.S. Department of Agriculture to report any sign of exposure or infection related to an H5 or H7 avian influenza virus and to humanely destroy and dispose of any infected flock from the farm site. None of the birds would be sent to processing plants or otherwise allowed entry into the food chain.
As a member of the National Chicken Council, Foster Farms has and will continue to collaborate with the poultry industry to maintain flock safety.
In November of 2005, Foster Farms launched a new Web page to address consumer questions about Avian Influenza (AI) and to detail the preventative measures the company is taking to protect its flocks and to related food handling and food safety issues. Foster Farms’ avian influenza FAQs can be found at www.fosterfarmsandnewmansown.net
Foster Farms is the leading poultry producer in the Western United States. Based in Livingston, Calif., the company has remained a family-owned business since its founding in 1939. Foster Farms branded fresh chicken is always locally grown on farms it owns or operates in each of its markets (California, Oregon and Washington). Foster Farms specializes in producing high quality fresh chicken products that are all natural with no preservatives or sodium-based additives, in addition to a full line of other delicious poultry products. The company produces and delivers premium quality poultry products to retailers, warehouse clubs and foodservice customers throughout the West.-30-