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US pork industry introduces new disease detection tool

The National Pork Board has unveiled AgView, a new digital tool to help protect the pork industry from foreign animal diseases.

11 November 2020, at 8:05am

The National Pork Board today announced the launch of AgView, a technology solution to help the US pork industry respond faster than ever before possible in the event of a foreign animal disease (FAD) outbreak. The web-based tool will allow participating producers to easily share their farm’s FAD status updates and pig movement data with state animal health officials. The opt-in, no-fee technology – funded by the Pork Checkoff – will allow for contact-tracing of infected animals to help rapidly contain or regionalize a potential FAD outbreak.

While any FAD outbreak on even a single farm would be devastating, the potential collective losses are staggering. According to a recent study from Iowa State University, an outbreak of African swine fever (ASF) in the United States could cost the pork industry $50 billion over 10 years.

“When pork producers adopt AgView, they are not only helping protect their farms, but also the entire industry,” said Pork Board CEO Bill Even. “COVID-19 taught us, the best way to quickly contain and recover from a significant supply chain disruption, which an FAD outbreak would be, is through real-time information, collaboration and a common data set to inform decision making.”

AgView is designed to help the US pork industry coordinate a unified response to FADs across the nation – from grain farmers to producers, to state health officials and veterinarians. When producer-users grant permission, AgView securely provides state animal health officials with health status, site and pig movement data from registered farms in real-time. This data sharing would go a long way in aiding an effective FAD response and could ultimately help the industry more quickly contain or regionalize in an outbreak.

“While local and state reporting protocols already are in place, there is no nationwide repository for this data and no mechanism for real-time sharing,” said Pork Board Chief Veterinarian Dave Pyburn. “Time is money in an FAD response, which is why we’re excited to have AgView to help fill that gap and facilitate a quicker return to business for producers, especially in our export markets”

AgView, as a single software platform, allows for the rapid and accurate visualization of relevant pig movement data and diagnostic test results to create visibility, accountability and trust during an outbreak of ASF or another FAD. To make this easier for producers, and ensure data is up to date, AgView can integrate with many existing record-keeping systems for easy synchronization. For those who do manual record-keeping, AgView also accepts imports from an Excel template.

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