South Dakota Bounces Back From Bird Flu

Flock repopulated, egg prices dropped

Some South Dakota egg producers are finally feeling some relief a year after the bird flu resulted in the deaths of millions of birds across the Midwest.

The outbreak led to soaring egg prices and hardship for egg producers and turkey farmers in the spring and summer of 2015.

Flandreau-based egg producer Dakota Layers says it has repopulated all nine of its flocks, which includes 1.3 million hens.

Farmer-owned turkey plant Dakota Provisions managed to bounce back from the bird flu losses, and is planning an $8.5 million expansion of its cold storage unit.

The repopulation also benefits consumers in the form of lower egg prices because young hens produce eggs at a faster rate than aging hens.