Egg Industry Center

Consumer Information & Resources

Avian Influenza (AI) Overview

Avian influenza, also referred to as bird flu, is a virus that infects all types of avian species, including wild birds and domestic poultry. AI is an animal health issue that causes mild to severe symptoms in birds, and in its most extreme form, can be fatal to infected birds.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the strains of AI that have been found in the U.S. are not a public health concern and have not affected any humans to date.

Avian influenza cannot be transmitted through safely handled and properly cooked eggs. To learn more about safely cooking and handling eggs, visit or the USDA Food Safety page.

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions


Returning Egg Farms to Full Production

Since April 2015, more than 12 percent of America’s egg laying hens (35 million) have been affected by AI. This has disrupted egg production and the availability of eggs.

Egg farmers affected by AI are making progress toward resuming egg production; however restoring the egg supply to pre-AI levels could take more than a year.  America’s egg farmers remain committed to the health and well-being of their hens and have implemented extensive biosecurity measures and taken every precaution to further protect their flocks. They also continue to remain dedicated to providing you with affordable, safe, nutritious eggs.

For more information on steps egg farmers are taking to repopulate their egg farms, click here.


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