[LETTERS to the editor]Give correct information on bird fluAmid the nonstop spread of bird flu outbreaks in the nation, more and more people have avoided eating chickens, ducks and eggs due to the danger of human infection.
With people across the country avoiding poultry products, total poultry sales are continuing to go down while the price of poultry is also falling.
Even though avian influenza usually affects only birds and poultry, some consumers think that avian influenza has a strong possibility of infecting humans.
Due to this reason, a lot of people have an incorrect understanding about avian influenza and eventually end up not eating poultry.
In general, avian influenza attacks mainly poultry. The possibility of human infection is very low.
There have been cases of human infection in some countries, resulting in death. However, in countries where this happened, health care services are generally poor.
No human infections have been confirmed in developed countries such as Japan, the United States and European nations.
The dangers of bird flu are exaggerated. According to the international magazine, TIME, people have a tendency to regard bird flu as a more dangerous disease than common influenza. The magazine also pointed out that on average 36,000 people die each year of common influenza, but no one has died due to bird flu in the United States.
The Korean government must release reliable information to consumers. In addition, the mass media should not focus on only reporting negatives on the issue of avian influenza. Instead, they need to try to give accurate information to help their readers and audiences make sound decisions.
Seo Seong-bae, head,
Korea Chicken Council
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