Opportunity Exists to Better Protect Canadian Swine From Cross Border Disease Spread

CANADA - The Veterinary Council with the Canadian Pork Council says an opportunity exists to create a system that will better protect the Canadian swine herd from the cross border spread of disease, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 14 June 2016
clock icon 3 minute read

Last week, just 3 weeks after the Canadian Food Inspection Agency began enforcing requirements for Canadian swine transports returning from US farms to be washed and disinfected in the US before returning to Canada, the Office of Manitoba's Chief Veterinary Officer reported Manitoba's first case of Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea since January, 2015.

Dr Egan Brockhoff, the Veterinary Council with the Canadian Pork Council, says the Canadian pork industry has strongly suggested this new guideline is a risk to pork producers.

Dr Egan Brockhoff-Canadian Pork Council

We're concerned that pork producers are sending clean Canadian trailers down into the United States and then going to PED contaminated U.S. truck washes or contaminated areas near the truck wash for a scrap out then returning to Canada and potentially bringing virus back.

At this time we don't know if there's a relationship between those transport regulation changes and what happening on this farm.

Certainly the Canadian Pork Council and Manitoba Pork and Manitoba Agriculture have all been meeting routinely to discuss our concerns around this.

The Canadian Pork Council has been meeting with the CFIA in Ottawa and certainly been meeting with members of the Ag Minister's team to continue to engage in discussions around this and there's opportunity there.

There's an opportunity I think to come out and create a new system that could work to potentially better protect the health and integrity of the Canadian pork herd.

Dr Brockhoff stresses the priority now is in ensuring the virus is contained to this one farm.

He says traceback is ongoing and it's going to be a few more days before we understand where the virus has come from and how it got onto the farm.

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