China Only Country Still Banning Arkansas Poultry

Russia, Japan, China, Turkey, Hong Kong and the U.S. states of Mississippi and Georgia banned Arkansas poultry and poultry products after a strain of avian influenza was found at a Scott County farm last year on June 18, said Preston Scroggin, director of the Arkansas Livestock and Poultry Commission.

Except for China, all the other countries — and the two U.S. states — are accepting Arkansas poultry again, Scroggin said Friday (June 13).

Scroggin said he expects China to begin accepting Arkansas poultry and poultry products six months to a year from now. He said there have been no more cases of bird flu in Scott County since last year’s incident.

The state Livestock and Poultry Commission received confirmation of the positive test last June 18 and quarantined all poultry within a 6.2-mile radius of the Scott County chicken house facility where the infected bird was located, according to Gov. Mike Beebe’s office.

Scroggin said 18 chickens from that farm in Boles were found to have avian influenza, commonly known as bird flu. Those birds were killed, as were 9,000 other chickens that were destroyed in the area as a precaution. He said the bird flu incident was isolated to one farm.

In June 2013, Scroggin said the state completed its follow-up testing of chickens in Scott County and found no new evidence bird flu.

“We feel real good where we’re at. We think we got it,” Scroggin told 5NEWS at the time.

Scroggin said follow-up testing was completed in July 2013 on about 10 commercial chicken houses and 52 “backyard flocks,” with none turning up any evidence of bird flu.