CANADA - Saskatchewan's chief veterinary officer is calling for increased communication among pork producers and their service providers to help reduce the potential for spreading Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea, writes Bruce Cochrane.
With the onset of colder weather the survivability of the virus responsible for Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea increases.
Dr Betty Althouse, the Chief Veterinary Officer with the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture, says while Saskatchewan remains free of PED the virus is circulating in parts of the Canadian swine herd as well as in the US and once an operation becomes infected the risk of the virus spreading increases dramatically.
Dr Betty Althouse-Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture:
As herds are positive during the acute phase they do shed a lot of virus and the virus is detected outside the barns as well around those barns so that anybody going onto those sites whether they're employees or service providers or feed trucks delivering they risk getting their vehicles contaminated and then can drive down the road and take it somewhere else so just the added biosecurity precautions to be really aware of the controlled access and restricted access areas to make sure that vehicles are cleaned and disinfected after visiting farms.
The other things is to be very aware when barns are positive if producers can be proactive about letting people know that they are positive so that anyone coming to the barn can improve or increase biosecurity would be useful.
What we don't want is for things like feed trucks to pick up an infection on a positive farm and take it back to the mill and then potentially get cross contamination and take it out to another farm and then have poor biosecurity there where employees walk outside the building and then walk in with the same boots and that sort of thing.
That's how you get transmission from barn to barn.
Dr Althouse acknowledges cleaning is more difficult in the winter but good procedures have been developed to effectively clean and disinfect in cold weather.
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