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Ontario offers farmers $2M to help prevent deadly pig virus from spreading

The Ontario government is giving the province's pork industry money to help contain a deadly pig virus that has already infected at least two farms.

Premier Kathleen Wynne, who also serves as agriculture minister, says $2 million dollars have been set aside to boost biosecurity infrastructure.

She also says new funding will be made available to farmers, truckers, processors and other members of the swine industry who need to invest in biosecurity measures.

She announced the funding a day after the province said a second case of porcine epidemic diarrhea was confirmed and a possible third is under investigation.

The virus has ravaged herds in the U.S. and officials say it has killed hundreds of piglets at a farm in southwestern Ontario.

A group representing Ontario hog farmers has warned the virus could cost the pork industry tens of millions of dollars in a year if it is allowed to spread to other provinces.

Ontario Pork says it is encouraging farmers to ramp up their biosecurity protocols to keep the pathogen — which is transmitted through contact with manure — off their property.

"We understand that there are investments to be made and that you need that reassurance quickly that the money will be there for you," Wynne said Tuesday at a conference call with members of the pork industry.

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