Picture: EPA

JOHANNESBURG - Gauteng MEC of Economic Development, Environment, Agriculture and Rural Development, Lebogang Maile, will on Tuesday visit a Boksburg farm that has closed down its operations as a result of the outbreak of Avian Influenza, or bird flu.

The Rooikraal Arendnes farm in Vredebos has been severely affected by bird flu and has resulted in the closure of operations. 

When in operation, the farm produces around 400,000 eggs per day, which it supplies to big retailers.   

The (HPAI) H5N8 virus was first detected in South Africa in June.

It recently struck Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo facilities. About 550 carcasses were recovered from the Westdene and Emmarentia dams, Zoo Lake and and the Johannesburg Zoo. 

Maile said he will visit Rooikraal Arendnes farm to "solicit a deeper understanding" of the impact of the disease outbreak, and also engage with senior management of the farm faced with possible job losses as a result of the closure of operations.

On Monday Western Cape egg producer Quantum Foods temporarily closed down two sites of the Lemoenkloof commercial layer farm in the wake of the bird flu outbreak.  

The two sites represent eight percent of the national egg supply of the group, resulting in a total of 17 percent of the group’s national egg supply now being affected by the bird flu.