President's message

November and December, 1996 

The Livestock Conservation Institute recently sponsored three workshops in Ames, Iowa dealing with interstate swine movement, pseudorabies (PRV) eradication, and brucellosis eradication. Dr. Mark Engle represented the AASP at the Interstate Swine Movement Workshop and reported that the initial discussion of this group focused on standardizing date requirements and health papers. I attended the PRV eradication workshop and I must say that I'm impressed with the success many states have had with reducing or eliminating PRV-positive herds. The attendees of this workshop included practitioners, state and federal veterinarians, and livestock inspectors. One prominent issue noted by several speakers was the importance of the practicing swine practitioner in the eradication process. Areas with a high prevalence of pseudorabies have been cleaned up if local veterinarians have been proactive and provided the necessary leadership and guidance for their clients.

Pseudorabies eradication may not be the most exciting part of your daily routine; however, I would like to challenge each of our AASP members who serve clients with pseudorabies-positive herds to take an aggressive, proactive role to help your clients eradicate this disease. The National Pseudorabies Eradication Program is rapidly approaching the target date of 2000. It will definitely be easier for producers to eliminate pseudorabies from their herds during the voluntary phase of the program. If producers choose to wait until the final years of the program, they will probably face restrictions, particularly on movement, that could create some financial hardship. The bottom line is that the veterinary profession -- and especially members of the AASP -- need to take a strong leadership role and help finish the job of pseudorabies eradication in the United States. Call that client today!

The AASP has arrived in the electronic age of communications. We have a web site and our journal, Swine Health and Production (SHAP), will soon be accessible via the Internet. The address for the web site is All members will soon be assigned a personal access code for the journal. This will restrict electronic access of SHAP to AASP members and subscribers.

The AASP Foundation is launching a major capital campaign with a goal of 300 Leman Fellows by the year 2000. Each contributor can become a Leman Fellow by donating $1000 to the Foundation or by pledging a $200 per year contribution for 5 years. The Foundation has funded numerous projects that have enhanced and promoted our profession and the pork industry. I am confident that the goal the Foundation has set will be attained and even surpassed. I would ask each of our members whether the benefits and rewards from AASP membership have greatly outweighed the relatively low cost of membership ($95 per year dues). If the answer is yes, then please plan to give something back to your organization and become a Leman Fellow.

Quebec City here we come! The AASP Program Committee has put together an exciting scientific program. Dr. Rueff's goal was to emphasize the basics of modern swine practice and also to introduce you to some new speakers. He and his committee have done a superior job of planning and organizing next year's scientific meeting. The Canadian Host Committee has done an equally superior job of planning for our accommodation during the meeting and post-convention activities. This will be a memorable meeting. Plan to bring your spouse and children, if possible, as there are events planned for families. The agenda for the meeting has been published early and is provided in this issue of SHAP so that you can make your travel plans early enough to take advantage of specials the airlines are offering.

This issue of SHAP will be the last before the holiday season. So, let me take this opportunity to wish all AASP members and their families a safe and happy holiday season. With everyone's busy schedule, the holiday season is a good time to pause and reflect on the importance of our families and colleagues. Have a great holiday season and a successful 1997!