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RIDGELAND, MISS. — A Cal-Maine Foods, Inc. facility in Parmer County, Texas, tested positive for highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI), which resulted in the depopulation of about 1.6 million laying hens and 337,000 pullets, or about 3.6% of the company’s total flock as of March 2, Cal-Maine said April 2.

Ridgeland-based Cal-Maine ceased production at the facility and is following US Department of Agriculture protocols. Cal-Maine will provide updates in its next quarterly report to be filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission and does not expect to provide interim updates unless material.

There is no known risk related to HPAI associated with eggs in the market, and no eggs have been recalled, according to Cal-Maine.

Last December Cal-Maine halted production at a facility in Kansas due to an HPAI detection that affected about 684,000 laying hens.

HPAI strains are deadly to domestic poultry and may wipe out entire flocks within a matter of days, according to the USDA. Nest runs for eggs were trading at $1.50 to $1.55 per dozen on March 28, which was down from $2.65 a year ago, as laying hens were building back to levels seen before the 2022-23 outbreaks of HPAI. An outbreak in commercial poultry occurred earlier this year in a turkey flock in South Dakota, according to the USDA.

Cattle from dairy herds in Idaho, Kansas, Michigan, New Mexico and Texas this year have either exhibited symptoms associated with HPAI or received presumptive positive test results, according to the USDA’s National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL).

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