By Bruce Cochrane
The technical veterinarian with Ontario Pork says Ontario's pork industry hopes, by limiting any spread of PED during the winter, it will be in a better position to work toward elimination of the virus next spring and summer.
Since April the number of new cases of Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea reported in Ontario has been limited to five.
Dr. Mike DeGroot, the technical veterinarian with Ontario Pork, says the key message for producers and service providers as the weather turns colder is to maintain the focus on biosecurity, washing trucks and trailers, in an effort to limit the farm to farm spread.
Dr. Mike DeGroot-Ontario Pork:
As the winter weather comes in, the virus is going to survive longer in the environment.
Any virus that escapes from a farm will survive longer in the environment giving it a better opportunity to spread in the winter but if we focus on the things we know that can contain the virus as far as if specific vehicle or piece of equipment may have been contaminated then we have proper procedures to wash and disinfect the equipment as needed.
If we can focus on efforts like that moving forward into the colder weather and just executing on the biosecurity procedures that we have in place, the hope is we'll be able to contain this even in the colder months.
Other efforts will be focused more on the industry spread as well.
We're going to be looking at improving containment through the assembly yards, focusing on some transportation audits and those sorts of things, focusing on some possible upgrades at the processing plants for biosecurity making it easier for the transporters to get in and out in a biosecure manner.
Those sorts of things, we'll be looking to put in place in the next upcoming months here.
Dr. DeGroot says producers have done a good job with biosecurity on farm and they need to maintain that high degree of focus coming into the colder months.
He says, if we can reduce the number of positive farms and the amount of virus out there then hopefully we can have good containment throughout the winter and look at further elimination next spring and summer.