Managing Risk in New Zealand's Pork Industry

NEW ZEALAND - NZPork is carefully monitoring the situation regarding the new strain of H1N1 influenza virus, called swine flu.
calendar icon 27 April 2009
clock icon 3 minute read

The H1N1 virus is called swine influenza because it probably originated in pigs. However it is a new strain of the influenza A virus involving components of swine, avian and human influenza. It is a human health risk because it is being transmitted from human to human, and does not appear to involve pigs at all.

There has never been a case of swine influenza in pigs in New Zealand. However NZPork, in collaboration with MAF Biosecurity New Zealand (MAFBNZ) is taking all precautions to ensure that potential transmission pathways from humans to pigs are controlled.

NZPork and MAFBNZ are, therefore, reminding all pork producers to maintain effective farm biosecurity, particularly around visitor access to farms and pigs. Pork producers are being reminded to be vigilant around disinfecting and cleaning procedures when people enter and leave a farm, to ensure staff do not work with pigs if they have flu-like symptoms, and to raise any unusual pig health issues with their veterinary adviser immediately. Similarly, NZPork and MAFBNZ are asking the industry’s veterinary advisers to maintain their vigilance around unusual pig health issues. This advice is being publicised on both New Zealand Pork’s and MAFBNZ’s website, and also the commercial industry and its advisers have been asked to pass on this message to all owners of pigs.

Symptoms of swine influenza in pigs

Symptoms of swine influenza in pigs include sudden onset of fever, depression, coughing (barking), discharge from the nose or eyes, sneezing, breathing difficulties, eye redness or inflammation, and loss of appetite.

Pork is safe to eat

The World Health Organisation has confirmed that it is safe to eat all pork and pork meat products. You can find out cooking instructions by clicking here.

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