Senators Urge USDA to Address Avian Flu Immediately


A group of Senators urges the Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service to take swift action to address the ongoing avian influenza outbreak.

The lawmakers ask Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to quickly use funds provided by Congress in the Fiscal Year 2023 Agriculture Appropriations bill. Led by Senator Tammy Baldwin, a Wisconsin Democrat, the lawmakers say, “it is imperative the agency quickly deploy additional resources and work with the states in improving biosecurity measures within the avian supply chain, including the disinfection of sites and the testing and quarantining of affected flocks.”

As of January 31, 2023, APHIS confirmed avian flu had been found in 745 flocks in 47 states, and affected over 58 million birds, directly contributing to rising egg prices. In the Fiscal Year 2023 Omnibus Appropriations Act, Congress provided an increase in annual funding to address the avian influenza outbreak, including over $64 million for improving avian health, and updated guidance on proactively mitigating the spread of disease.