To help guide surveillance and control of highly pathogenic avian influenza subtype H5N1 (H5N1-HPAI), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in 2004 devised a poultry farm classification system based on a combination of production and biosecurity practices. Four “Sectors” were defined, and this scheme has been widely adopted within Indonesia to guide national surveillance and control strategies. Nevertheless, little detailed research into the robustness of this classification system has been conducted, particularly as it relates to independent, small to medium-sized commercial poultry farms (Sector 3). Through an analysis of questionnaire data collected as part of a survey of layer farms in western and central Java, all of which were classified as Sector 3 by local veterinarians, we provide benchmark data on what defines this sector. A multivariate analysis of the dataset, using hierarchical cluster analysis, identified three groupings of the farms, which were defined by a combination of production-and biosecurity-related variables, particularly those related to farm size and (the lack of) washing and disinfection practices. Nevertheless, the relationship between production-related variables and positive biosecurity practices was poor, and larger farms did not have an overall higher total biosecurity score than small or medium-sized ones. Further research is required to define the properties of poultry farms in Indonesia that are most closely related to effective biosecurity and the prevention of H5N1-HPAI.
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Vol. 60 • No. 1s