USDA Asking Pork Producers To Report Virus Outbreak
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says hog producers will be required to report a deadly pig virus known as porcine epidemi diarrhea virus to veterinarians as part of an increased effort from the federal government to fight the disease.
The Ag Secretary gave some reassurance to pork producers when he clarified the request for information and reporting.
Vilsack said Thursday at the World Pork Expo in Des Moines that the federal government would pump $26 million into fighting PEDv. The disease has killed about 10 percent of the country's hog inventory over the past year.
Producers will be required to report when they're affected by the disease. They'll also be expected to develop a biosecurity management plan to monitor and control their respective farms.
The funding could include an additional $4 million to research a vaccine for the disease. Bill Tentinger is a pork producer from Le Mars and a past president of the Iowa Pork Producers Association. He listened to Vilsack's announcement, but says he was somewhat disappointed.
With the loss of ten percent of the nation's swine herds, it obviously will affect the pork prices, both for the producer and for the consumer. Steve Meyer of Paragon Economics serves as a consultant for the National Pork Producers Council.
The World Pork Expo concludes on Friday.
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