- Post Holdings Inc announced its company-owned Nebraska chicken farm has been released from quarantine by USDA after positive results on a bird flu test last month. Several more tests performed after the initial test "did not confirm the presumptive positive," Reuters reported.
- This release comes as a relief to Post, as it is now losing 10% less of its egg supply, changing its estimated percentage to 25% from its previously calculated 35%.
- According to Reuters, Post still expects "full-year adjusted EBITDA to be hurt by about $20 million due to the impact of the avian flu outbreak."
This announcement bodes well for Post and the rest of the poultry industry, as it may greatly limit the negative effect bird flu will have on this industry this year. Hormel Foods Corp has already had to issue job cuts as a result of the virus, and still more companies could follow suit. Some hard-hit states, like Iowa, have seen significant job cuts, and Iowa's governor has now requested federal unemployment assistance to "help more than 1,500 people who will lose their jobs by August," WHOtv.com reported. However Post's news demonstrates that the effects could be less severe than originally thought.
Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) recently said that USDA may not have sufficient resources to handle the bird flu outbreak if its budget is cut by the $500 million currently being proposed by members of Congress, which could in particular cut vaccination development and bio security measures. Other organizations and members of the poultry industry are turning to an overhaul in the poultry production model "to take into account that the birds grown are embedded into an ecology," KMA Land reported.