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Ag Department implements cattle import restrictions


The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has confirmed highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in dairy herds in Texas, Kansas, Michigan, Idaho, and New Mexico. Symptoms of the virus in dairy cattle include decreased lactation, low appetite, and thickening of milk. To date, there have been no reported cases of HPAI in livestock within Arkansas.
Additionally, on April 1, 2024, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed that a dairy farm worker tested positive for HPAI in Texas.
The Arkansas Department of Agriculture and Arkansas Department of Health are monitoring the situation and taking preventative measures to protect public and animal health within the state.
Pursuant to Arkansas Code Annotated 2-33-107, the following import restrictions are in effect immediately:
No dairy cattle exhibiting clinical signs and testing positive for HPAI will be allowed to move into Arkansas.
All dairy cattle entering Arkansas from states affected by HPAI in dairy cattle will require permitting by the Arkansas Department of Agriculture and may be required to complete pre-movement testing as determined by the State Veterinarian.
Failure to abide by these import requirements shall result in a whole premises quarantine on imported animals for 21 days and negative PCR testing for HPAI before release from quarantine.
State officials urge all producers, especially dairy and poultry farmers, to implement strict biosecurity measures on their farms to prevent the spread of the disease.
Arkansas ranks 46th among all states in milk production. Dairy farms in the state generate about $11 million in annual sales, according to Arkansas Farm Bureau. There are 30 registered dairy farms in the state that generate 7 million gallons of milk annually.
Producers with animal health concerns should contact the Arkansas Department of Agriculture at info@agriculture.arkansas.gov. To learn more about HPAI and for updates on the situation in other states, visit aphis.usda.gov/livestock-poultry-disease/avian/avian-influenza/hpai-detections/livestock.