Response seen curbing PED spread from Manitoba case

The “quite early” catch and quick response for Canada’s latest outbreak of porcine epidemic diarrhea (PED), in a sow barn in Manitoba’s “hog alley,” are expected to keep a lid on the virus’ spread beyond the one site.

The province’s chief veterinary officer (CVO) on Tuesday confirmed PED-positive tests at the southeastern Manitoba farm, and activated the provincial ag ministry’s Emergency Operation Centre to help the producer and run a “full disease investigation,” Manitoba Pork said Tuesday.

Control measures were “implemented immediately,” the pork agency said, and “a plan has been developed for restricted site access, barn cleanup and animal care.”

Producers within a five-kilometre radius of the infected site have been alerted and are monitoring their herds and collecting samples for testing, Manitoba Pork said.

“We had some very astute veterinarians and staff in the barn that caught this quite early and we were able to get control in place in terms of biosecurity and biocontainment on that farm very quickly,” Manitoba CVO Dr. Megan Bergman said Friday on the industry-sponsored program Farmscape.

Bergman’s office was also able to “initiate some trace activity with respect to understanding what has been on and off the farm both with respect to equipment, animals and people,” she said.

The province, she said, is now running surveillance testing of any “in-contact” farms that may have had some indirect contact with the affected farm, and following up on “any potential linkages that may help us identify where the introduction may have occurred.”

Once the farm’s animals begin to recover, she said, the farm can undertake the usual cleaning and disinfection process.

With good surveillance and strong biosecurity practices the risk of transmission should be limited, Farmscape quoted Bergman as saying.

In this case, Manitoba Pork noted Tuesday, the producer had already signed a “sharing of information” waiver allowing his herd veterinarian to share the information at his discretion with Manitoba Pork and other veterinarians.

Signing the waiver, Manitoba Pork said, allows both the hog agency and the CVO “to assist the producer in a more comprehensive and timely manner, while concurrently protecting the broader pork industry.”

The agency on Tuesday urged all veterinarians to ask their clients to sign waivers and to keep them on file ahead of any disease outbreak.

Canada hasn’t seen any on-farm PED cases since Ontario reported its 100th and 101st cases in February and March at finisher barns in Haldimand-Norfolk and Middlesex counties respectively.

The new Manitoba case marks the 11th for the province, whose most recent previous cases were at separate sow and finisher operations in the same general region last September. — AGCanada.com Network

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