Pork Producers Encouraged to Step Up Biosecurity as Spring Planting Activity Increases Potential for Movement of Viruses

Farmscape for May 1, 2024

Full Interview 12:48 Listen

The Director of Swine Health with Manitoba Pork suggests, as spring planting activity stirs up more dust increasing the potential for the movement of viruses, pork producers will need to pay particular attention to biosecurity. The latest major PED outbreak in Manitoba began in October 2021, peaked in January 2022 resulting in 129 farms infected and was declared over in late 2023. Jenelle Hamblin, the Director of Swine Health with Manitoba Pork, says currently there are no active cases on farm in Manitoba but PED has been top of mind for producers coming into 2024.

Quote-Jenelle Hamblin-Manitoba Pork:
We are anticipating, as part of our PED elimination plan, that 2024 is the timeline for our next large-scale outbreak of PED potentially and we are taking steps to prevent that from happening. We do know springtime means manure application is ramping up as well as the farmers are going to be getting out into the fields to start seeding, which is great. We love to see that happen but we do need to be aware that this field traffic does increase the dust movement which can then potentially move virus around. So, we need to be aware of when that is happening, where it’s happening in terms of proximity to our farms and taking steps to enhance our biosecurity. It really does come down to overall awareness to those increased field activities which can lead to greater dust and possibly virus movement in the area.

Should we see a new case of PED pop up here in Manitoba we’ll be looking at hitting it rapidly and aggressively and locking it down, locking down the farm as quickly as we can and eliminating the disease from the farm as quickly as we can. Of course that’s going to look different based on the sow farm, nursery or finisher but what’s outlined in our recommendations is to work as quickly as we can and as effectively as we can to eliminate the disease effectively and minimise the risk to the sector and the area as a whole.

Hamblin encourages producers to familiarise themselves with Manitoba Pork’s PED elimination plan and to review their own biosecurity focussing on what can be enhanced to keep virus off the farm.

For more visit Farmscape.Ca. Bruce Cochrane.

       *Farmscape is produced on behalf of North America’s pork producers