Farmscape for February 12, 2019
Scientists working on behalf of the Swine Health Information Center are evaluating the level of risk posed by feed of bringing a foreign animal disease into North America.
The pathogens that pose the greatest risk to the North American pork sector are any of the foreign animal diseases, the big three being African Swine Fever, Foot and Mouth Disease and Classical Swine Fever.
Swine Health Information Center Executive Director Dr. Paul Sundberg says the research has shown there is potential for those viruses to survive in feed and feed components during transport across the ocean but we don't yet know what is the actual risk of that happening.
Clip-Dr. Paul Sundberg-Swine Health Information Center:
Not only does it have survive coming across the water and being imported but it also has to get to pigs and it has to infect pigs and those are yet unknowns.
We're doing some research with Kansas State University and looking at oral dose of African Swine Fever and the ability of that virus to infect pigs orally so we could show that that might happen.
We're doing the same thing on Plumb Island with USDA ARS with FMD to show the oral dose of FMD should that happen.
In between we also, in 2019, and this is urgent the research is going to go on.
We're going to look at ways to get data about the other pieces of that custody chain.
If those viruses could be imported through feed they have to get to the pens and they're going to be looking at ways to demonstrate the transmission of viruses from feed to pigs through that chain, not ASF, FMD and CSF but we're looking at some other viruses that we could use as models to show that that chain could be open.
Dr. Sundberg says that's ongoing research and we don't know the outcome of that yet.
He says hopefully the work will show that that chain is not open and he would very much welcome that but it's something we need to know for sure.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.
*Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork