Following a unanimous vote by its board of directors last summer, the National Pork Board has committed to investing an additional $350,000 toward research, education, and coordination of efforts to better understand porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV). This increase in funding is in addition to $450,000 announced in June, bringing total Checkoff dollars invested to $800,000 as of September.
“Our number-one priority is to contain spread of the virus with the goal of increasing the potential to eliminate the disease,” said Dr Paul Sundberg, vice president of science and technology at the National Pork Board. “Through research we just completed, we already have determined that transportation of sows and market hogs can be a major risk factor in the spread of PEDV.”
The research projects currently funded by the Checkoff include the following:
• Environmental stability of PEDV – University of Minnesota
• Epidemiologic investigation on propensity for lateral spread of PED virus – University of Minnesota
• Propagation of PEDV in tissue culture and development of standardized reference samples for use in diagnostic testing – The Ohio State University
• Oral-fluid testing for cost-effective and efficient surveillance and control of porcine epidemic diarrhea virus in swine population – Iowa State University
• Evaluation of time and temperature sufficient to kill PEDV in swine feces on metal surfaces – Iowa State University
• Tissue localization, shedding, virus carriage, antibody response, and aerosol transmission of PEDV following inoculation of feeder pigs – Kansas State University
• Development and validation of isolation and diagnostic testing detection for PEDV – University of Minnesota
• Development and validation for diagnostic testing for antigen and antibody detection for PEDV – University of Minnesota
For more information about Checkoff-funded PEDV research, contact Paul Sundberg at PSundberg@pork.org or 515-223-2764.
Checkoff consolidates PEDV research information
To make it even easier for producers and others in the pork industry to find information about PEDV, the Pork Checkoff has created a shortcut web address at www.pork.org/pedv. This link directs users to the main page of Checkoff-funded PEDV research reports that are continually updated. Also, the pork.org homepage quickly directs users to all PEDV Update newsletters or the research page.
For more information, contact Mike King at MKing@pork.org or 515-223-3532.
Checkoff research addresses penicillin withdrawal
To address the increase in penicillin violative residues in sows, the National Pork Board funded research to determine the appropriate pre-slaughter withdrawal period for penicillin G procaine in sows under extra-label usage.
Key research findings:
• Follow a recommended 51-day preslaughter withdrawal with extra-label use to prevent violative residues.
• Even over-the-counter products such as penicillin must be used under the guidance of a veterinarian.
• Follow your veterinarian’s instruction when administering extra-label animal health products, including penicillin.
For more information, go to pork.org and search keyword “penicillin” or contact Steve Larsen at SLarsen@pork.org or 515-223-2754.
New food-service study shows pork is fastest-selling protein
According to Technomic, Inc’s “2013 Volumetric Assessment of Pork in Foodservice,” pork is sustaining its popularity, having become the food-service industry’s fastest-growing protein in each of the past 2 years.
This most recent study noted that total pork sold through food-service outlets reached a record-breaking 9.25 billion pounds, reflecting a volume increase of 462 million pounds over 2011 when the survey was last undertaken. The 2.6% increase outpaced the total protein growth average of 0.8% and the 1.5% total growth of the food-service industry itself. For more information, contact John Green at JGreen@pork.org or 515-223-2788.
Tracking safety data protects workers
The Pork Checkoff has introduced a new Web-based system to benchmark on-farm worker safety status, including a farm’s safety incidence rate, DART rates (days away, restricted or transferred to other duties due to a safety issue) and worker compensation costs. The Safety Benchmarking Database will house producer workplace safety information and create reports so that producers can compare their operation with the aggregate of all participants. Participation will be voluntary, with farm information held by a third party and only accessible to the Pork Checkoff and others in aggregate form. If producers choose, information can be provided for production areas within a farm system.
For more information, contact Bill Winkelman at BWinkelman@pork.org or 515-223-2603.
Checkoff Swine Health Committee visits Plum Island
At the invitation of USDA and with the permission of the US Department of Homeland Security, the Pork Checkoff’s Swine Health Committee recently visited the Plum Island Animal Disease Center. The committee heard from some of the facility’s researchers, learned about the island’s history, and even held its meeting in one of the facility’s meeting rooms. “We were pleased to have the opportunity to learn more about the critical research and the researchers who work to protect the US pork industry,” said Russ Nugent, incoming chair of the Swine Health Committee from Springdale, Arkansas. “This visit strengthened our working relationship with USDA and its research partners on our common goal of protecting the US pork industry from devastating diseases such as foot-and-mouth.”
To learn more about what to do if a foreign-animal disease is confirmed in the United States, go to pork.org and click on “Resources” and then on “Swine Health,” or contact Patrick Webb at PWebb@pork.org or 515-223-3441.
New PEDV biosecurity guidelines for manure handling and hauling available
Since it was first identified in the United States last April, porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) has created significant losses for some pork producers in many parts of the country. To help reduce the risk posed by PEDV-infected manure, veterinarians and university experts working with the Pork Checkoff, the National Pork Producers Council, and the American Association of Swine Veterinarians have created a set of guidelines for producers and commercial manure haulers.
“We know this virus is easily spread to uninfected pigs and clean farms by infected manure,” said Dr Paul Sundberg, vice president of science and technology for the Pork Checkoff. “As we enter the fall manure-application season, it’s a particularly critical time to follow a strict set of steps to help prevent the spread of this costly virus.”
The new guidelines (available at www.pork.org/pedv), which focus on good communication and adhering to a line of separation, are specifically offered for producers and commercial or other manure haulers traveling from one farm to the next and during land application of the manure.
For more information, contact Lisa Becton at LBecton@pork.org or 515-223-2791.