"A growing number of livestock, such as cows and pigs, are fueling new animal epidemics worldwide and posing more severe problems in developing countries as it threatens their food security, according to a report released on Friday" during an international conference in New Delhi, India, on Leveraging Agriculture for Improving Nutrition and Health, Reuters reported.
"The new assessments from International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) spell out how livestock diseases present 'double trouble' in poor countries," according to an article on ILRI's website. "First, livestock diseases imperil food security in the developing world (where some 700 million people keep farm animals and up to 40 percent of household income depends on them) by reducing the availability of a critical source of protein. Second, animal diseases also threaten human health directly when viruses such as the bird flu (H5N1), SARS and Nipah viruses 'jump' from their livestock hosts into human populations," the article stated.
Although developed countries "are effectively dealing with livestock diseases, in Africa and Asia, the capacity of veterinary services to track and control outbreaks is lagging dangerously behind livestock intensification," ILRI Deputy Director John McDermott said, according to the release. "This lack of capacity is particularly dangerous because many poor people in the world still rely on farm animals to feed their families, while rising demand for meat, milk and eggs among urban consumers in the developing world is fueling a rapid intensification of livestock production," he added.
The full text is available at http://globalhealth.kff.org/Daily-Reports/2011/February/11/GH-021111-Livestock-Disease.aspx?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+kff%2Fkdghpr+%28Kaiser+Daily+Global+Health+Policy+Report%29.
Reprinted in part from U.S. Animal Health Association