Yet there is still a demand for an all natural materials with the same distinctive versatility and appearance. Thankfully, some South American palm trees, phytelephas aequatorialis particularly, actually produce a chemical with the same hardness, look and luster, called vegetable ivory. Vegetable ivory is in fact the endosperm of the palm’s seeds – – the same portion of the seed as white rice, snacks or the meat of a coconut. It is remarkably hard and dense for a seed and will actually become polished and carved just like elephant tusks. On top of that, a single tree can produce just as much as 50 pounds of nuts in a single year, equivalent to the ivory found in an individual elephant tusk. The tree produces seeds every year during the period of its mature life.But we consider this very seriously. Fitch said condition officials chose against announcing the infection to the general public because the birds examined positive for contact with the H7N3 stress of the virus. Any risk of strain that ravaged Asian poultry stocks in late 2003 was H5N1 bird flu virus. That version of the virus provides killed 240 people worldwide and researchers worry it might mutate into a form that spreads conveniently among people. Gary Mickelson, a spokesman for Springdale-based Tyson, said no signs were showed by the hens of sickness prior to their pre-slaughter blood tests. He said the exposed birds all came from a contractor. As a preventive measure, Tyson is stepping up its surveillance of avian influenza in the region also, Mickelson said in a statement.