A year ago the poultry sickness that is known as virulent Newcastle disease (vND) was spreading like wildfire in California’s backyard flocks and state and federal agricultural officials were deploying tactics to limit the spread. This month, USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is transitioning efforts in Southern California from response to prevention because no new vND cases have been confirmed in Southern California since Feb. 1 this year. During the response, there was extensive testing. Virulent Newcastle disease generally is not a human food safety threat and was originally known as exotic Newcastle disease. Humans are not likely to be exposed to Virulent Newcastle disease so long as poultry and eggs are thoroughly cooked. People who work with or otherwise come into contact with sick birds can become infected, but it is rare.

 

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