US - The director of swine health research with the National Pork Board credits changes in the way the pork industry deals with biosecurity as a result of lessons learned from PED with helping reduce the losses caused by the virus, writes Bruce Cochrane.
Since Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea was first identified in May 2013 in the US the infection has spread to at least 33 different states, affecting over 50 per cent of the US sow herd and peaking in 2013 and 2014 before showing signs of decline in 2015.
Dr Lisa Becton, the director of swine health research with the National Pork Board, says there's a lot of things that we've learned and implemented over time in a couple of different areas.
Dr Lisa Becton-National Pork Board:
One major one obviously is transportation.
We know from our experiences with the PRRS virus that trucking can be a vector of disease spread and the same thing for PED.
I think one of the things that we have learned is going the extra step of heating trailers.
Right now the research has shown that 160 degrees fahrenheit for 10 minutes can have an impact on reducing that virus or killing the virus.
That's not necessarily something that we had really advocated before but I think PED has shown us that we need to take that extra step.
Other things that may have not been as traditional is assessing feed and feed ingredients.
We've learned from our northern counterparts when they had the outbreak in Canada and suspected the plasma then a lot of attention was focused on what is going on with our feed ingredients?
What do we do to mitigate that either through additives in the feed, time or temperature or pelleting, and so I think there's a lot of things we're still learning on the nutritional side, but those are some of the things that we're trying to assess and really impact at this point.
Dr Becton acknowledges, when we change feed ingredients it does have an impact on our suppliers.
She says that's why there's a lot of ongoing research into what are those impacts, what happens when we add or don't add certain ingredients, and what are the things we can do to help prevent PED in those ingredients?
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