Pig virus migrates to US, threatens pork prices

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DENVER (AP) Pork prices could rise in the next few months because of a virus that has migrated to the U.S., killing piglets in 15 states at an alarming rate in facilities where it has been reported.

Colorado Department of Agriculture official Dr. Nick Striegel says the Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus was thought to exist only in Europe and China.

Colorado and 14 other states began reporting the virus in April, and officials have confirmed its presence in about 200 hog facilities around the nation.

Striegel says it’s unclear how many pigs have died from the virus that causes severe diarrhea, vomiting and dehydration, but it has been devastating for pork producers where it has been diagnosed.

He says the disease is not harmful to humans and there is no evidence that it affects pork products.

The virus has been confirmed in Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, and South Dakota.
(Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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