Bird flu in Maharashtra: Eggs and chicken safe to consume amid Avian Influenza?
Pune: After six states already in the fear of spread of bird flu, Maharashtra on Monday confirmed the Avian Influenza after 900 hens were reported dead in Parbhani district. Hundreds of thousands of birds have died in Kerala, Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan.
Avian influenza or bird flu is an infection caused by viruses that occur naturally among birds. Wild birds generally carry the viruses in their intestines but usually do not get ill from them. However, bird flu is highly contagious among birds and can make some birds, including chickens and ducks extremely sick and kill them.
Now after, Maharashtra is hit with the bird flu many people may be wondering about the consumption of eggs and chicken. The question is are eggs and chicken safe to consume amid bird flu?
One must follow these practices while cooking poultry:
• Detach raw meat from cooked or ready-to-eat foods to evade adulteration.
• Do not use the same knife or chopping board.
• Always wash your hands neatly while handling both raw and cooked foods.
• Do not keep cooked meat back on the same plate it was on earlier to cooking.
• Do not use raw or soft-boiled eggs in food preparations.
• After handling frozen poultry or eggs, wash your hands thoroughly.
• Wash and disinfect all utensils neatly
WHAT WHO SAYS
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), eggs and other poultry are safe to eat if cooked neatly. However, no birds from flocks with the flu should enter the food chain. The health body mentions cooking of poultry at or above 70 degree Celsius throughout the product, so that absolutely no meat remains raw. It also believes to have found no evidence of consumers being exposed to the flu via the handling or consumption of poultry products.