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Sask Pork Confident Western Canada Can Eliminate PED

8 June 2017, at 6:00am

CANADA - Despite a recent wave of Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea infections in southeastern Manitoba, the Chair of the Saskatchewan Pork Development Board remains confident the disease can be eliminated from western Canada, reports Bruce Cochrane.

Since 29 April, several swine operations in southeastern Manitoba have been confirmed infected by Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea.

Government and industry have taken steps to contain the spread of the virus and identify the source of infection.

Florian Possberg, the Chair of the Saskatchewan Pork Development Board, notes British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan have remained free of PED and Manitoba has been successful in previous years in previous outbreaks in containing the virus and in cleaning up infected operations.

Florian Possberg-Saskatchewan Pork Development Board

It seems that, when PED first came into the mid-west United States, there was hopes there that PED would be able to eradicate the disease from the United States.

My sense is they've completely given up on trying to eradiate.

They're really about harm reduction and harm mitigation.

We've not accepted that position in Canada.

We still believe, when we do have infections, that we can eradicate it and in Saskatchewan we strongly support that position.

The less infection we have around us, the more safe our producers are.

Mr Possberg says the challenges they're having in southeastern Manitoba are a reminder of how vulnerable the industry and that biosecurity needs to be at a very high level and you can't let down your guard.

He says Manitoba is working hard to find the source of infection and how it's spreading so there are lessons to be learned to help avoid PED in areas that are still free of the disease.

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