The Fraser Valley poultry industry has dealt with several outbreaks of Avian Flu over the past 12 years

UFV panel on lessons learned from avian influenza

Event at Chilliwack campus includes panel of experts talking about the several outbreaks in the Fraser Valley over the last 12 years

  • Thu Oct 20th, 2016 11:00am
  • News

The Fraser Valley poultry industry has dealt with several outbreaks of Avian Flu over the past 12 years. Find out what lessons farmers, industry representatives, and ministry experts have learned at a special event at the University of the Fraser Valley.

UFV’s Alumni Association is bringing together a panel of expert speakers on Oct. 24 at 5 p.m. to explore how the industry has evolved in the way it responds to this disease and the wider scale impacts of disease outbreaks on producers, their families and farming communities.

Join faculty host Renee Prasad, a UFV agriculture professor, and guest panelists at an evening open to students, alumni, faculty and the public. The event will take place in the Aboriginal Gathering Place on the UFV Chilliwack campus at Canada Education Park. Admission is free and the public is welcome.

The Fraser Valley poultry industry is unique in many ways. Most farms are family farms and the concentration of operations in the valley is very high, while urban encroachment is increasing.

Guest Panelists:

Dr. Victoria Bowes, Diagnostic Avian Pathologist, BC Ministry of Agriculture

Dr. Bowes has spent the last 28 years employed at the Provincial Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory in Abbotsford as a specialist pathologist with expertise in avian pathology. The diagnostic caseload involves disease investigations in all species of birds. Dr. Bowes has been directly involved in the detection, outbreak management, and industry recovery efforts of four outbreaks of notifiable Avian Flu in the last 12 years.

Sarah Loehndorf, BC Broiler Hatching Egg Commission

UFV alumna Sarah Loehndorf is the on farm program coordinator at the BC Broiler Hatching Egg Commission. She works directly with hatching egg producers on biosecurity, food safety, and animal welfare. During the last Avian Influenza event she worked with Canadian Food Inspection Agency staff in the permitting department as an industry representative. Loehndorf graduated from UFV in 2012 with her Livestock Production certificate, Horticulture Crop Production & Protection certificate, and Agriculture Technology diploma. She is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Biology through Thompson Rivers University.

Allan Cross, Hatching Egg Producer and Broiler Grower in Aldergrove and Abbotsford, industry leader in emergency disease response

Allan Cross immigrated to Canada in 1992 and has been involved in the poultry industry ever since. Cross is the past president and current vice-chair of the BC Broiler Hatching Egg Commission. He brings a valued perspective not only on being an egg producer but also as the co-lead (industry) of the 2014/15 Avian Influenza response.