Deadly pig virus found for the first time in Alberta

By Charles Lefebvre
January 9, 2019 - 4:43pm

EDMONTON, AB — A disease that has killed millions of piglets around the world has been detected in Alberta for the first time.

Alberta Pork confirms the porcine epidemic diarrhea (PED) virus, which causes diarrhea and vomiting in pigs, was detected at a 400-head hog operation in the province.

The organization says there has been no food safety concerns as a result of the incident, and park products are safe to consume.

PED was first confirmed by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency in January 2014 in Ontario, and it has also been reported in Manitoba, Quebec, and Prince Edward Island.

The virus is spread by the fecal-oral route, with the most common source being infected feces coming onto a farm with various surfaces that can transmit the virus.

Any place off-farm, such as an abattoir, could be a potential source for bringing disease to a herd herd, according to Alberta Pork. Producers should review their farms’ biosecurity policies regularly, and consult Alberta Pork or their herd veterinarian as needed.

Alberta Pork says it is working with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry to investigate the outbreak and ensure it doesn’t spread further.

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