Is Poland’s chicken boom behind its devastating bird flu outbreak?

Despite industry denials, many believe unchecked growth and the high density of farms created perfect conditions for the epidemic

• Read more: A bird costs less than a pint: welcome to Britain’s poultry capital

“I’ve lost everything,” says Andrzej Lewandowski, an egg producer from the village of Brudnice in Żuromin county, about 100km north of Warsaw. Żuromin and the neighbouring county of Mława are the hub of Poland’s chicken industry.

“I had to kill 140,000 hens. I lost 500,000 eggs, 40 tonnes of feed and soon I’m going to give up 250 tonnes of cereals I was going to use to make feed,” says Lewandowski about measures to eliminate a bird flu outbreak on his farm.

No biosecurity standards will work in this concentration of production

Related: ‘You got it’: how bird flu turned one US farmer’s life upside down

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