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Effect of 2021 HPAI in Germany


A spokesperson for the Central Association of the German Poultry Industry (ZDG) confirmed that for the 2020-2021 highly pathogenic avian influenza period, 1.4 million hens and other poultry were depleted.  This compares with 880,000 birds during the 2016-2017 outbreak.  The infection caused extensive losses in the district of Cloppenburg in the State of Lower Saxony.


Since a number of farms growing broilers, layer pullets, and turkey poults have been depopulated and are undergoing decontamination, hatcheries were forced to dispose of unwanted chicks and poults.


It is considered significant that the president of the ZDG, Friedich-Otto Ripkey is advocating vaccination as an alternative to depopulation.  This change in approach would be contrary to recommendations of the World Organization of Animal Health (OIE) since in nations where HPAI is not endemic a slaughter-out policy is adopted for any H5 or H7 infection irrespective of pathogenicity.