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Last Updated: Saturday, 3 February 2007, 13:08 GMT
Outbreak of bird flu: reactions
Farm in Holton
The farm in Holton, Suffolk, is the site of the outbreak
The H5N1 strain of avian flu was responsible for the death of 2,600 turkeys on a farm in Suffolk, authorities have confirmed.

Experts and industry representatives gave their reaction to that news as officials set up a three-kilometre protection zone around the site.

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Strict movement controls are in place, poultry must be kept indoors, there is a prohibition on gatherings of poultry and other birds and on-farm biosecurity measures will be strengthened.

Strict movement controls are in place, poultry must be kept indoors, there is a prohibition on gatherings of poultry and other birds and on-farm biosecurity measures will be strengthened.

Fred Landeg, Britain's Deputy Chief Veterinary Officer

There are a number of problems with vaccination in that it takes about three weeks to get immunity.

In relation to human beings we are in touch locally with the Health Protection Agency and they are advising on the treatment of workers on Bernard Matthews' farm and indeed with... staff who are dealing with the disease on the premises."

Professor John Oxford, virologist at Queen Mary College, University of London

The fact this has been smouldering for a bit suggests it is less virulent than some outbreaks.

I don't think it has made any difference as a threat to the human population.

The most likely explanation is that a small bird has come in through a ventilation shaft.

One good thing about this virus is that it's easily destroyed. You can kill it with a bit of detergent.

You want to move in and take action straight away and I'm sure they'll be doing that.

Peter Kendall, president, National Farmers Union

There is a plan in place and we are dealing with this effectively.

It's vital that we keep all poultry keepers well-informed.

We're encouraging all farmers to be incredibly vigilant, look at their flocks carefully and we do need to reassure consumers that this is not an issue about the safety of poultry - it's completely safe to eat.

This is something we have planned for. We have structures in place.

Professor Hugh Pennington, microbiologist, Aberdeen University

It's a poultry problem. There are very good measures in place to control it from the poultry point of view.

It's not a virus that's going to spread into humans.

The cases in the far east that we've heard about, you had very, very, very close contact between people who basically keep chickens in their homes, in order to catch this virus.

So in terms of risk to the public, risk to humans, no, there isn't any risk.

Peter Bradnock, chief executive, British Poultry Council

This is not good news but I think any sign of avian flu is not good news for poultry stocks.

At this stage it appears that this infection is only in one house of the farm.

The advice really is to be much more vigilant about any signs of illness among birds.

David Nabarro, United Nations co-ordinator for avian influenza

This virus is going to be in bird populations for several years to come.

The way in which we'll deal with it is by implementing the well-rehearsed plan, which is to stamp it out at source.

We've got to learn to accept that, not see it as a serious problem and just get on with normal poultry-rearing and consumption in the way that we tend to enjoy, and just see this as just one of those things that has to be dealt with through normal process.





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