The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) in Vietnam both have urged the Vietnamese government and public to remain vigilant in protective efforts against H5N8 human infection following the first confirmed cases of human transmission in Russia lately.
Though Vietnam has regulated to quarantine poultry meat before putting it on the market, slaughter and sale of live poultry in unlawful slaughterhouses are still rampant in the southern metropolis whereas bird flu infections in humans are typically associated with direct contact with infected live or dead poultry
For years, to prevent bird flu, city authorities have prohibited transportation and sale of live poultry in flea markets and makeshift markets in sidewalk imposing a threat of bird fly outbreaks. A wide variety of chickens, ducks, and pigeons were on sale in such above-mentioned markets in districts 3, 7, 12, Tan Binh, Go Vap, and outlying district Binh Chanh. Street vendors in Pham Van Chieu Street in Go Vap or Truong Dai bridge in District 12 were insisting customers to buy their live chickens, with price of VND140,000 per kilogram.
Vendors killed live fowls in the pavement and the wastewater produced by slaughtering will flow into culverts giving off stinky smell and polluting environment. Such activities pose a high risk of spreading an avian influenza outbreak, threatening the health of the community
Resident Tran Thi My in Nguyen Van Cong Street said the live poultry makeshift market has been set up for years causing traffic congestions and environmental pollution affecting households in the neighborhood meanwhile city dweller Luu Chi Vy living in Duong Thi Muoi Street in District 12 expected competent agencies to oversee sale of live poultry.
According to the city Department of Ho Chi Minh City Animal Husbandry & Veterinary, live poultry are still on sale in 337 places in 147 markets in 20 district. Consumers are advised to buy poultry meat with clear indication of origin to prevent the potential spread of an avian influenza epidemic.