HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — The first case of Avian Flu was confirmed a week ago at Kreider Farms in East Donegal Township and, after a six-mile control zone was set up, two more cases were found this past Wednesday, one of which was also in East Donegal.

“There’s no present public health concern. This is an agricultural issue. No human cases of avian influenza viruses have been detected in the United States,” said Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding.

Secretary Redding says the zone has helped tremendously to control access and exposure. “All of those farms are subjected to additional testing. I know that there are permit requirements for moving products in and out of that zone.”

Get daily news, weather, breaking news, and sports alerts straight to your inbox! Sign up for the abc27 newsletters here. 

Secretary Redding provided an update on Friday, April 22, on the Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) and what consumers should know about the evolving situation.

“While we’re very concerned about the threat this avian influenza outbreak is to Pennsylvania’s $7.1 billion poultry industry, food safety and availability is not something to worry about,” Secretary Redding said. “We encourage everyone in Pennsylvania to move forward with normal buying, cooking, and eating habits.”

The Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention has said that the avian flu does not present an immediate public health concern. No human cases of the virus have been detected in the United States, and eggs and poultry are safe to consume if stored and cooked at a proper temperature.

“Follow the normal, good handling practices of poultry consumption, cooking properly, handling properly. If you do all of that, there’s no greater exposure than there would be in normal times,” Secretary Redding said.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has sent response teams to the commonwealth to coordinate with the state on a response plan to protect the state’s poultry industry amid this national outbreak of the avian flu.

As of April 20, there have been three affected commercial flocks, which total 3,450,100 birds. No backyard flocks have been affected. The up-to-date status of Pennsylvania cases can be found by clicking here.

Getting rid of the Avian Flu won’t be a quick task, but Secretary Redding is hopeful.

“I am always hopeful with the turn of spring and some warmer weather, as we’ve talked about this virus and migrating patterns that we can get out, and the sooner we get out of the Atlantic Flyway, the migration of wild birds, the better off we will all be,” Secretary Redding said.

Both commercial poultry farms and Pennsylvanians with backyard chickens should be on high alert to protect their flocks from this highly contagious, fatal disease. Domestic poultry, including chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, guinea fowl, quail, pheasants, emus, and ostriches are most susceptible to avian influenza.