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How the New Bird Flu Vaccine Will Affect Your Chicken

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I keep getting closer and closer to becoming a vegetarian.  We just don't know what we are consuming anymore, no matter what the "experts" say.


How the New Bird Flu Vaccine Will Affect Your Chicken

“I’m a little worried about the bird flu,” my friend Kimberly told me. We had just passed a few tourists all wearing surgical masks — not an uncommon sight in Times Square.

“I’m not worried about actually catching the flu,” she continued. “I’m worried about what’s happening to our food now that they’re going to start vaccinating chickens.” She’d just read Tuesday’s news that a new vaccine had been conditionally approved to fight the disease, which has already harmed more than 48 million chickens in the U.S. and cut egg production by nearly 10 percent.

“I understand why you’d be concerned,” I told her. “But relax. You can still get your Chick-fil-A fix anytime you want, without any bird-flu worries.” 

In fact, when the news broke, my team at Eat This, Not That! magazine immediately jumped on the phone with Carol Cardona, the country’s pre-eminent expert on avian influenza, from the University of Minnesota. We asked her about the impact of the new vaccine on our food supply, and about what to look for when grocery shopping. She had some encouraging, and important, advice—and while at the store, don’t missthese essential 29 Best-Ever Proteins for Weight Loss!


There’s nothing to worry about yet

If you have fears about there being vaccine antibodies in your chicken, stuff them. “No one is using the vaccine currently,” says Cardona. “The outbreak that we had in the Spring is gone, so that’s been eradicated. There’s no more infection in domesticated poultry at this time.”


The vaccine is a tool, not a cure

…and will only be implemented if current strategies to contain the bird flu fail. What are those strategies? “It sounds Draconian, but the fact is, the faster the infected birds are depopulated, the faster the virus dies,” says Cardona. “It can’t live without a living host,” so the strategy is to separate and kill the infected birds.” The vaccine, on the other hand, would help protect the birds from getting infected, but it wouldn’t kill the disease. “It makes a less susceptible host, but they are not completely protected.” Plus, each chicken would have to be injected, an arduous process. “So therein lies the rub,” says Cardona. “It will be difficult to manage but it’s an important tool, if we need it.” Speaking of brutal measures, before you buy your next filet, read these 8 Shocking Facts About Your Salmon!


There may not be anything to worry about—at all

Even if the vaccine is used, Cardona says you shouldn’t be concerned when you feel like chicken tonight. “You should be thinking that you’re glad you have a chicken supply and the vaccine is another tool to keep that supply coming,” she says. “The chickens you get from the grocery story are not vaccinated today. But if they were vaccinated, they’d have antibodies that would be suitable for consumption. Antibodies are different than antibiotics. An antibiotic is a chemical substance, the antibody is a protein. Antibodies are a natural way to fight infection. There’s nothing for the consumer to worry about.”


Those antibodies are transferred to the eggs

“As mammals, we think of how our babies are protected when they’re born, and get antibodies from mother’s milk, right?” asks Cardona. “Chickens get antibodies from the yolk. So, yes, eggs could have antibodies in them, if they ever use the vaccine. And there are already antibodies in eggs—and in you.” Knowing exactly when to eat your egg could lead to rapid fat-blasting—check out this essential list of The 25 Best-Ever Nutrition Tips for Weight Loss!


The seal of approval matters

“As someone who’s worked in agriculture around the globe, I think anything inspected by the Food Safety Inspection Service, a branch of the USDA, is good to eat—they inspect the poultry that go to stores.” That goes for caged hens or birds raised on a pasture, you name it. “You could raise it in your house on your backyard—however it gets to that weight and age, when you’re ready to eat that bird and sell it, in this country, it will go through an inspection process—it’s inspected by those USDA inspectors and they determine that it’s a healthful product for consumption. So as long as it’s an FSIS-inspected product, I’m good. Look for the USDA seal.”


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I don't think it's a bad thing, but it's going  to raise the price of chicken higher than it's gone because of them killing off  millions in the outbreak

It's just right now, we as consumers haven't a clue which brand we can trust and who to stay clear of.  

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  • Elders (Admins)

Vaccinations are the only realistic way to go, given the intensive farming that's prevalent in the West. Chicken is better, in terms of amount of consumable meat versus amount of protein input, than grain-raised beef or lamb. But if we raise creatures of any kind for human consumption, and do that by intensive farming, there will inevitably be the consequence of diseases taking hold in animals held in large quantities in close confinement. We humans have become very clever in combating disease, But we don't seem smart enough to recognise that many of the problems are of our own making.

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I worked in a chicken processing plant. It was many years after that before I could eat chicken again. When you smell like raw chicken after showering and showering in hot water?  You don't want to eat it.

Personally?   I thin kthe way we raise meat animals these days is horrific.    What we put in them via hormones, vaccines, even what we feed them is a nightmare.   I try to avoid meat for the most part.   But we  are omnivores.   Food today isn't what it was  in our grandparents time. We either go back to  small farming on our own, or  educate ourselves as to what is the lesser of all evila regarding our meat and our food in general.

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My youngest son buys his beef from a local farmer, and kindly shares some of it with me.  I literally cannot eat meat out at a restaurant anymore, and if I do, I can't finish it, and usually suffer later on that evening and the following day.  My son has spoiled me in a good way.  It is either this farmer's vacuum packed meat that will last forever in the freezer, or no meat at all.

Chicken is so far so good, but still can't eat much of it.  It loses its good flavor after eating a little of it, and then I just can't even stand the smell.

Seafood, if it's farm-raised, forget it.  Wild caught only.  Farm-raised is laden with chemicals and antibiotics, and they swim in, and eat, filth.

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