Posted May 29, 2014
An Indiana farm has become the first to publicly confirm that it suffered a second outbreak of a deadly pig virus, according to an article on NBC News available here. Fox News also published an article available here, Reuters here, and Global Post here.
For more information on efforts to combat the virus, recent posts from this blog are available here, here, and here.
Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus (PEDv) has wiped out more than 10 percent of the U.S. pig population, and it is predicted that losses from the virus in the world’s biggest pork exporter could cut production by as much as 7 percent, according to Fox News.
Along with decimating herds, PEDv has also sent prices surging, but it is likely to subside before the end of year as the causes are being identified, the head of World Organization for Animal Heath (OIE) said.
“I’m confident. Like in all other diseases we know how to stop them once we have identified the causes properly,” OIE Director General Bernard Vallat told Reuters.
He said that the spread of the virus was likely due to a lack of hygienic precautions, notable disinfecting trucks that enter and leave farms, but was potentially linked to feed, according to Fox News.
The farm chose to be anonymous, but their veterinarian, Matt Ackerman, spoke on their behalf. The farm “does an excellent job of sanitation,” Ackerman said. “That’s why it’s so hard to figure out why they’re struggling with it,” according to Reuters.
The state and federal effort to stamp out PEDv has operated on the assumption that a pig, once infected, develops immunity and will not be affected by the disease again for several years. Likewise, farmers that had been affected were not known to suffer additional outbreaks.
Repeat outbreaks have occurred since the virus was identified a year ago, however, farms have not publicly confirmed before now.
PEDv outbreaks recur in about 30 percent of infected farms nationwide, the American Association of Swine Veterinarians told Reuters.
Hog futures reached a record high last month and are up more than 26 percent at $115 per hundredweight since the first U.S. outbreak was confirmed last summer. Retail pork prices have also set new records, and a wave of re-infection could cause even more losses to the nation’s hog herds.
For more information on animal feeding operations, please visit the National Agricultural Law Center’s website here.