A small number of hogs have tested positive for the porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDv) at a high-traffic site in eastern Manitoba, according to the Office of the Chief Veterinary Officer.
Based on the CVO’s initial investigation, it is believed the source of the infection was due to environmental contamination from potentially two high-traffic sites, not from the source farms.
A “high-traffic site” is any place where a large number of hogs are moved and handled. Federal and provincial processing facilities, truck-wash stations, livestock assembly yards and livestock trailers all meet the criteria.
The virus, which is most commonly spread by hogs ingesting contaminated feces, has now been confirmed on 57 farms in Canada, including one in Manitoba, one in Prince Edward Island, one in Quebec and 54 in Ontario.
While only one farm has tested positive in Manitoba, testing has confirmed the virus at six other sites.
In the U.S., the virus is estimated to have killed between four and five million hogs.
Last week, United States Department of Agriculture secretary Tom Vilsack announced the department will require farmers to report cases in an attempt to slow the spread of the disease.
PEDv causes diarrhea, vomiting and severe dehydration in pigs. While older pigs have a chance of survival, 80 to 100 percent of piglets that contract it die.
This week, there were three new reports of PEDv at high-traffic or environmental sites in Manitoba, but no new reports of suspected PEDv cases on Manitoba pig farms.
The virus is not a food safety issue and it does not affect humans.
» Brandon Sun