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EghtesadOnline: The deadly avian flu infecting chickens across the country cannot be passed on to humans, according to World Health Organization, and consumers need not worry about egg and chicken consumption, the secretary-general of Iran’s Union of Producers of Egg-Laying Hen said on Tuesday.

“The acute avian flu, including strains of H1N5 and H1N, cannot be transmitted to humans unless one is in direct contact with the carcass of infected chicken or their dung,” Farzad Talakesh was also quoted as saying by IRNA.

In response to rumors circulating on the social media, the official said there has been no report of human infection yet.

He added, however, that in order to be on the safe side, it is advised that chicken is cooked at a temperature of above 70 degrees centigrade before consumption, according to Financial Tribune.

Nasser Nabipour, the chairman of the board of directors at Tehran’s Union of Producers of Egg-Laying Chicken, said almost all the Iranian provinces, except Semnan and Khorasan Razavi, are now dealing with the deadly virus. The outbreak has forced the cull of some 17 million chickens across the country, leading to a decline in supply, a drastic rise in egg prices and an imbalance in the market, Mehr News Agency reported.

The outbreak is said to have inflicted losses worth over 20 trillion rials (more than $477 million) on production units so far.

In a bid to bring market balance, the Ministry of Agriculture has issued permits for the import of 20,000 tons of eggs at a reduced tariff of 5% (from the regular 55%) until the end of the current Iranian year (March 20), ILNA reported. According to the Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration, 116 tons of eggs worth $169,000 were imported last week, Mehr News Agency reported on Monday.


Iran Avian Flu