Traces of bird flu found in pasteurized milk

by | Apr 24, 2024

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reported on Tuesday that traces of the bird flu virus were detected in certain samples of pasteurized milk in the U.S., but has reassured consumers that the milk remains safe to drink pending further testing.

The FDA announced on Tuesday that traces of the bird flu virus were detected in samples of pasteurized milk during PCR testing, which is meant to detect genetic material, though is known to be flawed.

These samples revealed inactive remnants of the virus, indicating that the pasteurization process effectively killed the virus. The agency clarified that a positive test result does not necessarily indicate the presence of a live, infectious virus.

The CDC stated that while pasteurization is expected to deactivate the virus, it may not completely eliminate viral particles. However, based on current information, they maintain that the commercial milk supply remains safe for consumption.

The FDA is continuing its testing of egg and milk production to ensure the safety of these supplies from the virus. While the agency maintains that milk is safe to drink, it is awaiting the results of additional studies for confirmation. Results from ongoing safety studies are expected to be released in the coming days to weeks.

This follows the identification of a positive human case of avian flu at a Texas dairy farm several weeks ago. While it was only the second human case of H5N1 ever recorded in the country, there is currently no evidence to suggest that the virus is being spread among humans.

The CDC also recommends that milk producers take precautions when disposing of milk from sick cows to prevent it from becoming a source of spread.

 

Source: Newsweek

 

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