In an e-mail exchange with The Globe and Mail, the director of WHO’s Department of Food Safety, Zoonoses and Foodborne Diseases cautioned consumers against eating meat from sick or dead pigs infected with swine flu because the virus may survive the freezing process. “Almost all microorganisms, including most viruses, can to some degree survive freezing,” Jorgen Schlundt said. But Dr. Schlundt stressed that influenza viruses are not known to be transmissible to people through eating COOKED pork. “Heat treatments commonly used in cooking meat will readily inactivate any viruses potentially present in raw meat products,” he added. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/
Jorgen Schlundt, director of the World Health Organisation’s Department of Food Safety, Zoonoses and Foodborne Diseases, said care must be taken to ensure that pigs and their meat were checked for all diseases, including the H1N1 virus that may be present in the blood of infected animals.
“Meat from sick pigs or pigs found dead should not be processed or used for human consumption under any circumstances,” he told Reuters. It is possible for flu viruses such as the new H1N1 strain to survive the freezing process and be present in thawed meat, as well as in blood, the expert said. But he stressed that there was no risk of infection from eating or handling pork so long as normal precautions were adhered to. “While it is possible for influenza viruses to survive the freezing process and be present on thawed meat, there are no data available on the survival of Influenza A/H1N1 on meat nor any data on the infectious dose for people,” he wrote in an email reply to questions from Reuters about risks from the respiratory secretions and blood of infected pigs. Schlundt said it was still unclear whether and how long the virus, which is commonly known as swine flu but also contains human and avian flu pieces, would be present in the blood and meat-juices of animals which contracted it. “The likelihood of influenza viruses to be in the blood of an infected animal depends on the specific virus. Blood (and meat-juice) from influenza H1N1-infected pigs may potentially contain virus, but at present, this has not been established,” he said. The WHO has urged veterinarians, farm hands and slaughterhouse workers to exercise caution in their contact with pigs to avoid contamination until more is known about how it manifests in the animals. “In general, we recommend that persons involved in activities where they could come in contact with large amounts of blood and secretions, such as those slaughtering/eviscerating pigs, wear appropriate protective equipment,” Schlundt said.
World Health Organization announced that it will henceforth refer to this flu as influenza A (H1N1) Canadian health officials American officials changed their nomenclature too.
Simple Ways to Stay Healthy
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) advice on protecting yourself against swine flu:
– Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze and then throw the tissue in the trash.
– Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hand cleansers are also effective.
– Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. That’s a major route of entry into your body.
–Try to avoid close contact with sick people or those in close contact with sick people.
–The virus can remain on objects previously touched by infected people, so regular hand washing is very important.
– Influenza is thought to spread from the coughing or sneezing of infected people.
– If you get sick, CDC recommends that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them
HUSBAND SUES PIG FARM USD 1 BILLION OVER WIFE’S H1N1 RELATED DEATH
“We think that the conditions down there are a recipe for disaster,” says Rosenthal. “This type of virus is more likely to evolve and mutate in this much filth and putrescence. It’s more than a mere coincidence that the first cases emerged right there in La Gloria, Mexico.”
H1N1 Virus: The First Legal Action Targets a Pig Farm
In an initial step toward what could be the first wrongful-death suit of its kind, Texas resident Steven Trunnell has filed a petition against Smithfield Foods, the world’s largest pork producer, based in Virginia, and the owner of a massive pig farm in Perote, Mexico, near the village of La Gloria, where the earliest cases of the new H1N1 flu were detected.
Trunnell filed the petition in his home state on behalf of his late wife, Judy Dominguez Trunnell, the 33-year-old special-education teacher who on May 4 became the first U.S. resident to die of H1N1 flu. New viruses have emerged from animals to infect and kill humans for thousands of years, and while today’s factory-farming conditions may raise that risk,