Posted March 17, 2014
Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and Senator Kay Hagan (D-NC) have asked Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to approve disaster assistance for small pork producers affected by a deadly pig virus, according to a news release from Sen. Stabenow’s office available here. Agri-Pulse also reported on the story here.
The Porcine Endemic Diarrhea Virus (PEDv) has killed over four million pigs nationwide since April 2013. PEDv has a mortality rate of nearly 100 percent for piglets under two weeks old. Currently, no vaccine or treatment for the virus exists.
The Senators wrote, “Pork producers that have been impacted by PEDv face economic devastation, these producers are finally experiencing periods of higher margins after prolonged periods of razor thin profits. If this disease persists, pork herds will continue to diminish and producers risk going out of business.”
The Senators also asked USDA to increase research for a vaccine and other interventions for the virus.
For more information on disaster assistance programs, please visit the National Agricultural Law Center’s website here.