Company: Avian flu hits 2M Michael Foods hens in Nebraska

A Michael Foods flock in Nebraska has tested positive for avian influenza, with about 2 million hens affected. Other cases have been confirmed in poultry in Minnesota, Alberta and Ontario.

Roy Graber Headshot
On the puzzles there is an inscription - Avian Influenza, on a blue background pills.
On the puzzles there is an inscription - Avian Influenza, on a blue background pills.
(SkazouD | Bigstock)

Post Holdings, parent company of egg products company Michael Foods, said a Michael Foods flock in Nebraska tested positive for avian influenza.

The affected flock included about 2 million hens, the company further stated.

Little more information was provided by Post Holdings, other than it did not expect to provide additional updates on specific avian influenza incidents unless the cumulative effect of subsequent incidents exceeds 5% of Post’s controlled supply and that Post Holdings does not expect to provide an additional update to its outlook until its second quarter earnings release, regardless of the extent of avian influenza.

New cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in commercial poultry in the United States are normally published daily on the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) website, but as of noontime on April 13, the same day Post announced the avian flu detection, there were no new cases reported in Nebraska.

Nebraska has, however, had two published cases of HPAI in commercial poultry, both of which were in commercial broiler operations in Butler County. These two cases were confirmed on March 22 and March 24, and collectively involved about 987,000 birds.

Five new cases in Minnesota poultry

The Minnesota Board of Animal Health reported five new cases of HPAI in commercial poultry, all of which were confirmed on April 12.

Two of those five were commercial turkey flocks, one was a commercial broiler flock, one was a commercial layer flock, and the other was identified as “commercial poultry slaughter.”

Three flocks affected were in Morrison County, representing the turkey, broiler and egg sectors. The turkey flock involved 45,000 birds, while the broiler flock had 43,286 birds and the layer flock had 214,277.

The other turkey flock was in Kandiyohi County flock and involved 38,000 turkeys, while the commercial poultry slaughter flock involved 50,000 birds in Yellow Medicine County.

Presumed-positive case in Indiana

The Indiana Board of Animal Health (BOAH) reported that a second commercial duck flock in Elkhart County has tested presumed-positive for an H5N1 variant of HPAI. That flock contained about 6,000 birds.

This case follows an earlier confirmed case of HPAI in an Elkhart County duck flock, which according to APHIS, included 4,724 birds.

All other cases of HPAI to date in Indiana have involved commercial turkey operations in Dubois and Greene Counties. The six confirmed cases in those counties accounted for a total of 171,224 turkeys.

Three new avian influenza cases reported in Canada

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has reported two new cases of HPAI in Ontario and one new case in Alberta, both involving poultry.

While the amount of information released by CFIA is limited, the agency stated that the new case in Alberta was confirmed on April 11 and was located in Camrose County. The new cases in Ontario are located in the townships of South Glengarry and Markham, and both were confirmed on April 12. It is Camrose County’s first confirmed case, but the second case for both previously mentioned Ontario townships.

So far in 2022, Ontario has had 14 cases of HPAI, although two of those were confirmed in backyard flocks. Alberta has had seven cases of HPAI, and none of those seven have been identified as backyard flocks.

To learn more about HPAI cases in North American commercial poultry flocks, see an interactive map on

Read our ongoing coverage of the global avian influenza outbreak.

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