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May, 8 2024

The Resurgence of H5N1

Avian Influenza, H5N1, The Bird Flu

The poultry and dairy industry are facing daunting challenges with the resurgence of avian influenza (H5N1), commonly known as bird flu. This highly contagious viral disease has the potential to wreak havoc on farms, leading to devastating consequences for both animals and businesses alike. As the threat looms large, industry players are turning to advanced disinfection methods like SteraMist to safeguard their facilities and prevent the spread of this deadly virus.

The Bird Flu is Back….Again

This article from Food Safety News lays out what is currently happening with the bird flu, H1N1, outbreaks, and where the most affected areas in the country are. (Flynn) The article notes that bird flu cases continue to increase and the H5N1 virus is spreading through bird populations and dairy. So, what does that mean for an industry that has been reeling for some time?

Challenges in Controlling H5N1

Avian influenza, H5N1, is not a new issue for the poultry industry. However, recent bird flu outbreaks have reignited concerns due to the virulence of the virus and its ability to spread rapidly among bird populations. Recently, cases of avian flu have been identified in dairy herds and have also infected humans in some instances. The consequences of an outbreak can be catastrophic, leading to mass culling of birds, economic losses for farmers, disruption of supply chains, and even public health risks if the virus mutates to infect humans.

The primary concerns during an avian influenza, H5N1, outbreak are the rapid spread of the virus and the virus’s resilience in the environment. Contaminated equipment, surfaces, and air can serve as reservoirs for the virus, facilitating its transmission among birds.

“The more widespread H5N1 becomes, the more chance there is that it could hit upon a combination of mutations that could increase its risk to humans,” said Jesse Bloom, an evolutionary biologist at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle. (Mandavilli and Anthes, “New Mutations Identified in Bird Flu Virus”)

Preventing the Spread of Avian Flu

SteraMist’s ability to disinfect all these elements makes it an ideal choice for mitigating the spread of avian influenza (H5N1) within farms and processing facilities. The versatility of SteraMist further enhances its utility in combating avian influenza. Whether it’s disinfecting barns, coops, milking parlors, hatcheries, or processing areas, SteraMist can be applied effectively to sanitize any part of a facility that is affected by the virus. This comprehensive approach helps contain the current outbreak and prevents future recurrences.

SteraMist’s non-corrosive and residue-free nature does not cause damage to equipment and surfaces or leave behind harmful residues that could pose additional risks to animals or workers. This aspect is crucial in maintaining operational continuity while ensuring a safeguarded and hygienic environment for both livestock and personnel. The rapid application and short contact time minimize downtime, allowing businesses to resume operations quickly after disinfection. This is essential in reducing economic losses and maintaining productivity during challenging times. The ability to disinfect quickly and efficiently is a cost-effective solution for farms and processing facilities. You can learn more about SteraMist in the food industry here.

As avian influenza continues to threaten the poultry and dairy industry, adopting advanced disinfection technologies like SteraMist is necessary to provide a sustainable and environmentally friendly approach to biosecurity. By implementing robust biosecurity measures that include regular SteraMist disinfection protocols, farms, and facilities can fortify their defenses against avian influenza and other microbes, ensuring the health of their livestock, workers, and consumers.

Mandavilli, Apoorva, and Emily Anthes. “New Mutations Identified in Bird Flu Virus.” The New York Times, 3 May 2024,

Flynn, Dan. “More Want to Know about Why Bird Flu Is Spreading to Humans and Others.” Food Safety News, 22 Apr. 2024,