Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding opened applications for the second round of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) recovery support for poultry farmers and integrators who suffered losses in HPAI Control Zones (the 10-kilometer perimeter around an infected, quarantined farm).
Pennsylvania's poultry industry contributes $7.1 billion to the economy and 26,600 jobs. Avian influenza directly impacted 17 poultry farms in Lancaster and Berks counties this spring and summer, causing a loss of more than 4.2 million birds. It also was recently detected in a backyard flock in Northampton County. The commonwealth's new HPAI Recovery Reimbursement Grant Program provides $25 million to help bridge the gap for affected farmers and facilitate a path to recovery.
"Thanks to the work of Governor Tom Wolf and the General Assembly, we're able to continue to roll out this $25 million recovery program to help Pennsylvania's poultry industry recover from avian influenza," said Redding. "Pennsylvania's poultry producers and integrators recognize the ongoing threat to our food system due to upcoming wild bird migrations. Together, we remain vigilant. We're prepared to continue fighting this threat."
"We have been concerned that avian flu could reach Pennsylvania for some time and have included funding in previous budgets to provide more testing capacity at the Penn State and Penn Vet laboratories to test for avian flu, African swine fever, and other threats to our meat and poultry supplies," said State Representative Stan Saylor. "Now that it is here, more resources became necessary. I was happy to work with other leaders to deliver $31 million more in the current budget to combat avian flu through additional testing and emergency assistance to farmers who are suffering tremendous losses."
The grant program, administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, will reimburse farms, integrators and allied industries who suffered demonstrable financial losses due to inclusion in a HPAI control or quarantine zone.
The HPAI Recovery Reimbursement Grant program consists of two rounds of funding:
- Round one is open to poultry farmers and integrators and premises located in the 3-kilometer infected zones as defined by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture's General Quarantine Order. Round one applications are due by September 10, 2022.
- Round two is now open to those who suffered losses in the Control Zones. The second round is open to any business or poultry farm location affected by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture's General Quarantine Order. Round two applications are due by October 8, 2022.
Losses up to $100,000 will be reimbursed at 100%. Losses of amounts over $100,000 may be reimbursed on a percentage basis, based on the number of applications received and available funding.
Pennsylvania's General Quarantine Order is still in place, enabling the state to place additional restrictions on HPAI-infected farms to control the spread of the disease. The prohibition on exhibiting poultry at fairsOpens In A New Window is also still in place.