PET Food Processing - October 2022 - 39

ANIMAL DISEASES
STAYING
PREPARED
Looming animal diseases and their potential
impact on US pet food supply chains.
By Jordan Tyler | jtyler@sosland.com
A
Animal diseases circulating the world are posing risk for
food supply chains in North America, including protein
supplies for the pet food manufacturing industry. With
highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) ebbing and
flowing across North America and affecting the supply of
poultry ingredients, as well as the risk of African swine fever
(ASF) entering the United States and potentially devastating
pork production, having a strong biosecurity plan
in place and staying in the know on regulatory guidelines
could help reduce the severity of risk.
Pet Food Processing spoke with two topic experts to dive
into the current risk environment for each of these animal
diseases, as well as best practices, federal tools and funding
granted to address HPAI and ASF in the United States.
Highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI)
According to the USDA's Animal and Plant Health
Inspection Service (APHIS), avian influenza is caused by
the Type A influenza virus. The virus spreads from wild
birds to poultry flocks, including commercial and backyard
chicken flocks, as well as turkey, duck and pheasant, all of
which are used in the development of dog and cat food to
some extent.
For the pet manufacturing industry, the threat HPAI
poses to chicken protein availability is particularly acute.
Chicken is the most widely used protein source in pet
food, with approximately 854,988 tons of chicken-based ingredients
incorporated into US dog and cat food formulas
in 2018. Additionally, 74,734 tons of turkey and 10,221 tons
of duck was used in pet food formulations in 2018, not to
mention the number of poultry byproducts - such as rendered
meals, fats and organ meats - also incorporated in
pet food.
The specific strain currently moving across Canada and
the United States first originated in Europe in November
2021. The strain - dubbed H5N1 - can infect poultry
flocks with mortality rates as high as 90% to 100%, and
spreads quickly throughout a flock once one bird is infected.
The disease causes multi-organ failure, and infected
birds typically perish shortly after being affected - within
the first 48 hours or so - making it critical that poultry
farmers and pet food processors keep close watch of animals
for symptoms of infection.
According to Billie Johnson, Ph.D., food safety and
regulatory compliance manager at BHJ North America, St.
Joseph, Mo., outbreaks of HPAI tend to crop up in a seasonal
pattern, peaking in February or March and declining
in the summer months.
" We will see about the lowest incidences of HPAI in
September, but then it begins to rise in October, " she said.
In 2022, the peak for H5N1 happened in March, preceded
by a peak in Europe in February. Johnson described
the impact of the H5N1 strain so far as " a slow burn " that
rapidly expanded to the United States.
" If you look at a map from Canada to the US, you can
see how the birds flew into the US, and that's where they
started affecting, " or spreading the virus to commercial and
backyard poultry flocks, Johnson said.
According to the United States Geological Survey
(USGS), commercial poultry flocks are being hardest hit
in Alberta and Saskatchewan, Canada. In the United States,
Johnson noted HPAI is hovering in commercial poultry
www.petfoodprocessing.net | October 2022 | PET FOOD PROCESSING 39
The United States
is one of the world's
premier pork producers
and the secondlargest
exporter of
pork globally.
©agnormarkt - stock.adobe.com
http://www.petfoodprocessing.net

PET Food Processing - October 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of PET Food Processing - October 2022

PET Food Processing - October 2022 - Intro
PET Food Processing - October 2022 - 1
PET Food Processing - October 2022 - 2
PET Food Processing - October 2022 - 3
PET Food Processing - October 2022 - 4
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