By Bruce Cochrane
The chair of Sask Pork is encouraging the province's pork producers to take advantage of the warm summer temperatures to prepare for a heightened risk of PED as the weather begins to turn colder.
Earlier this month a truck in Saskatchewan that had hauled pigs in Manitoba and Ontario and was washed in Ontario was identified as suspicious for PED.
Follow-up tests at the National Lab in Winnipeg were inconclusive and the truck did not move pigs after being washed but the incident has drawn attention to the need for stepped up sanitation.
Sask Pork Chair Florian Possberg notes during a recent visit to the U.S. a 25 hundred sow operation estimated it cost 400 thousand dollars over one month when it was hit by PED and losses can go even higher on operations that re-break or are affected by other diseases that can more easily infect a weakened herd.
Florian Possberg-Saskatchewan Pork Development Board:
PED has wrecked havoc not only in the United States but places like Mexico, Japan, Korea, China and, in the United States alone it's estimated that there's been some eight million piglets died from PED infection.
Even though in the summertime we tend to see fewer active cases in areas where PED is active it's still there.
We know that the reports out of the United States is every week they do have additional cases.
It's particularly important for us as an industry here to be not only free but to make sure that we get well prepared because it appears this is a virus that tends to be much more easily spread in colder times of the year so we have to get our game up so we can protect ourselves into the fall season.
Possberg says if we can keep the virus out of herds in Saskatchewan it reduces the risk for neighboring producers in the province and for producers in adjoining provinces.