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Sweden reports first case of PRRS

SWEDEN - The first case of PRRS (Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome) has been reported in Sweden. Since the spread of the disease seems to be limited to a few farms, the Swedish Board of Agriculture has decided to kill and destroy all animals on the affected farms.
calendar icon 31 July 2007
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On July 6, 2007, Sweden reported its first case of PRRS (Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome). The disease was found in a routine test carried out under Sweden’s control program for PRRS. Since this first case was confirmed, the disease has been found on four additional farms. The Swedish Board of Agriculture (BOA) has imposed restrictions on the movement of animals within the five farms, as well as restrictions on moving animals and products to and from these farms. Restrictions have also been imposed on seven additional farms that have been in contact with the affected farms. PRRS has not been found on any of these farms.

Swift response
As a response to the first PRRS case, the BOA started an investigation in order to determine the spread of the disease. Samples have been taken from 125 pig farms in southern Sweden. The results, which were presented on July 12, showed that the spread seems to be limited to a few farms. Due to the limited spread, the BOA has decided try to stop the disease by killing and destroying all animals on the affected farms, starting with the two farms on whic h the disease has been confirmed. The number of animals on these two farms is about 10,000. The BOA is awaiting confirmation for the three remaining farms on which the disease has been found.

The BOA will continue its investigation by further sampling at farms in the nearby area as well as in slaughterhouses. Should the outcome be that the disease is more widespread after all, the BOA might need to change its strategy.

Swedish farmers have indeed feared that the increased prevalence of PWMS (Postweaning Multisystematic Wasting Syndrome) during the past years would lead to the introduction of PRRS. This has especially been a concern since Danish transportation of pigs destined for the Baltics and Russia through Sweden started a couple of years ago. Should BOA’s investigation show that the disease is more widespread, Swedish pig farmers will probably have to deal with the fact that the disease is now a reality in Sweden and will have some economical effects.

Further reading on PRRS