Bird flu’s latest victim: badminton

01-08-2006 | |

The latest unsuspecting victim of the bird flu virus is the sport of badminton. Play is impossible with a shuttlecock, the best of which are made from goose feathers plucked in northern China.

Millions of those geese have been culled to help contain the virus, causing a feather shortage with consequences for the badminton world.

Torsten Berg, the official bird flu spokesman for the International Badminton Federation, was quoted as saying, “I believe the problem is potentially considerable.”

In the US, prices for premium shuttlecocks, which cost up to $25 for a tube of a dozen, have risen 25 percent in the past few months.

Manufacturers are competing for the limited feathers, and players are also scrambling to buy the best shuttlecocks in bulk, further restricting supply.

More news and information about bird flu / avian influenza.

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