Minnesota fighting PRRS long-term

06-10-2006 | |
Minnesota fighting PRRS long-term

Minnesota pork producers, veterinarians and University of Minnesota researchers have recently formed a task force trying to rid swine herds of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS).

The task force (MNPETF) aims to eliminate PRRS just like pseudorabies was eradicated in commercial herds. It took 20 years to eradicate pseudorabies and it might just take as long to do the same with PRRS.

Costs for pork industry

The disease costs US pork industry at least $560 million through death losses and production declines on a yearly basis. Through the task force’s efforts, the state’s 5,000 pork producers can expect to see more on PRRS management practices and how they can adapt those practices on their own pig sites.
The task force’s eradication efforts will be producer-led and voluntary, it is claimed, since MNPETF members believe that producer-to-producer communication and research information transfer to the farm-level will eventually lead to successful PRRS eradication.
It is not surprising Minnesota is the first state to organise a task force like this, since Minnesota pork producers, researchers and veterinarians have a track record of cooperatively addressing industry issues.
North Carolina and Indiana are reviewing Minnesota’s task force structure for adoption, and the Canadian province of Ontario has an active PRRS group already in place.
Methods currently used to remove PRRS virus from a farm include whole herd depopulation-repopulation, test and removal, and herd closure. Farms that have held PRRS at bay can find its animals infected even when practicing tight biosecurity.
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