In the wake of bird flu outbreak once again in some parts of the country, several states have issued restrictions in the movement of poultry and poultry products. When the country is yet to recover fully from the impact of the pandemic Covid 19 on the economy including that of poultry industry, the avian flu outbreak has become double jeopardy to the poultry farmers. Some states have put a total ban on the interstate and intra-state movement of poultry and its products including eggs, while some states have only banned the movement of poultry excluding eggs. Manipur is in the first category of states which have banned interstate transport of poultry items including eggs. While assuring the general public not to panic as there is no case of bird flu in the state in a media briefing the state Veterinary Minister O Lukhoi Singh said that the government has already imposed a temporary ban on import of poultry and poultry products such as eggs and live birds including ducks, guinea fowls, turkey and quails through all the national highways connecting the state and at the airport as precautionary measures. District authorities have been directed to enforce the restrictions.
Precaution is alright, but one has to consider the impact of such restrictions on the poultry industry and that too with sound scientific reasons also. World Health Organisation (WHO), the global health regulatory body has advised non-vegetarians to take necessary precautions before consuming eggs or meat. These products must be rinsed thoroughly before cooking to ward off any germs on the surface, it said. According to a directive issued by WHO and UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, meat and eggs must be cooked at a temperature of 70 degrees Celsius, the normal cooking temperature to kill the heat-sensitive virus. For eggs, it is advisable to purchase only fresh produce and that bought from trusted sources. A runny yolk is an indication that the egg is stale or may be infected, and must be avoided.