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USDA Announces New Requirements For Tracking The PED Virus In Pigs

A new requirement from the USDA about reporting pig viruses has Iowa pork producers concerned and confused.
A new requirement from the USDA about reporting pig viruses has Iowa pork producers concerned and confused.

The new requirements say pork producers will have to report PED Virus or Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus along with others.  Not only will producers have to report on the viruses but they'll also have to track the movements of pigs, vehicles and other equipment leaving affected premises.

The USDA announced the new requirements on Friday but the USDA said they don't have a definite time frame quite yet for when the new rules
could go into effect.
 
"We lost approximately 4,500, just short of 4,500 baby pigs," said Harold Lee, Manager of Meadow Hill Farm.

Meadow Hill Farm is one of many pork producers across the country hit hard by the Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus, or PED. It's why the USDA
announced it will start requiring reports of the PED virus among pigs.  But they haven't yet said how they should be filed.
 
"Until someone can give me a definite answer of what it means to me, all I can say is okay. So you want to track it, but nobody knows how yet," Lee
said.

Without a clear direction, pork producers like Lee said they aren't sure what to do.
 
"I've talked with my vet, he's not sure what it means. Several other people I've talked to, the questions come up, who pays for it," Lee said.

The USDA said it's too soon to tell what the reports will look like.  They're currently working with groups like the Iowa Pork Producers Assn. to
work out the details.
 
"It's too soon to tell what's going to be required in terms of reporting. But certainly they should contact their industry groups for
general information," said Joelle Hayden, USDA Public Affairs Specialist.

The USDA said it has no time frame yet for when the PED virus reports should begin or what they'll look like, leaving pork producers feeling left
in the dark.
 
"It's going to be interesting to see what comes down over the next few months. Because honestly, they put the rule out and nobody has a clue
what they're supposed to do," Lee said.

Until the federal order comes down for what pork producers should do about reporting the PED virus, they'll have to play it by ear and keep a
close eye on the their pigs.

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