Egg Industry Center

Avian Influenza in Egg-Laying Hens

What you need to know

Avian influenza (AI)—also known as the “bird flu,”—is an infectious disease of birds caused by type A strains of the influenza virus. The identified strains of AI found in 2015 on U.S. egg farms have not affected any humans and are not considered a risk to U.S. public health, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

Avian influenza cannot be transmitted through safely handled and properly cooked eggs. All eggs should be cooked thoroughly and at recommended temperatures to reduce the risk of any foodborne illnesses. To learn more about cooking and handling eggs, visit the Egg Safety Center or the food safety page by the US Department of Health & Human Services. Click here for USDA information on avian influenza and egg safety.

There have been no new detections of Avian influenza in egg farms in the U.S. since June 17, 2015. For information related to the outbreak in spring 2015, see the USDA-APHIS website.

Latest information

On January 9, 2017, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the identification of avian influenza (AI) in a wild mallard duck in Montana. Per USDA, no illnesses or mortalities in domestic poultry have been reported. Beginning in November 2016, high pathogen avian influenza (HPAI) has been confirmed in several Asian and European countries; for more on global AI outbreaks see the World Organization for Animal Health website. is provided by the Egg Industry Center, American Egg Board and United Egg Producers.

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© 2017 Egg Industry Center. All rights reserved.