PED in Hawaii Suggests Contaminated Feed as Vector for Spread

US and CANADA - The chair of Sask Pork says a case of Porcine Epidemic Diarrhoea (PED) in Hawaii provides strong evidence that feed is a potential vector for the spread of the virus, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 9 December 2014
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US veterinarians are attempting to pinpoint the source of a case of PED in Hawaii.

Florian Possberg, the chair of the Saskatchewan Pork Development Board says PED likely got into Ontario by contaminated feed, perhaps Prince Edward Island as well and we still do not understand how an infection that is very similar to what was in China got into North America so this case in Hawaii suggests there's a very good chance that a contaminated feed ingredient was the vector.

Florian Possberg-Saskatchewan Pork Development Board:

We do believe that some feed ingredients have a higher risk in terms of possibly carrying the PED virus.

Although the manufacturers of dried porcine plasma protein say their process should be such that it eliminates the transfer of PED we think evidence shows otherwise so we've had quite a number of our units actually take that ingredient out of our feed.

It was one of the things that was used commonly in young pig diets.

We also think that there's a possibility that if there's a virus attached to feed grains it may be possible for it to spread into naive herds as well.

So where we source our feed ingredients, even our feed grains, is something that we're concerned about and it's part of our strategy of how we protect our units, is really where we source our ingredients from.

Mr Possberg says that, to protect pigs, besides transportation and live animals and staff, we really need to have sound strategies to deal with feed as well.

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