October is National Pork Month
If you visit the National Pork Board web site, you can download a number of tasty recipes to celebrate what the Board calls “Porktober”. So be ready to serve up some yummy meals.
In the meantime, also be ready to tackle African Swine Fever (ASF) if it makes its way into the U.S. Recently Iowa and 13 other pork-producing states practiced to face it head-on by participating in a four-day ASF role-playing exercise hosted by USDA APHIS.
Departments of agriculture, state agencies, legislators, pork producers, and pork industry representatives continue to test their foreign animal disease plans to see how they hold up. Each state is independently playing along in real time with the USDA, which is throwing in new situational kinks throughout the exercise.
In part, the Iowa scenario includes a statewide standstill for 72 hours, a quarantine, tracking animal movement and the source farm depopulated and animals disposed of on-site to contain the virus. The goal is to have all the actions completed within 24 hours of a confirmed case of ASF.
As there is currently no vaccine for ASF, the only way to fight the virus is to have extremely good biosecurity practices in place on farms and across borders. Knowledge is power.
Are your swine facilities in good condition? Do you have strict biosecurity measures in place?
The swine industry has to be diligent, but don’t forget to enjoy the fruits of your labor and have a hearty pork meal this month.