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National Hog Farmer Weekly Preview
May 2, 2011
In this issue:
  USDA's Inter-Agency Snafu Could Disrupt Markets
  A Five-Year Recap of Porcine Circovirus
  Members Call for Investigation of HSUS' Tax Status
  Indiana Proposes Animal Care Rules

USDA's Inter-Agency Snafu Could Disrupt Markets
The Production and Price Summary tables are missing this week because they are full of blank cells. The omissions are the result of an ongoing snafu at USDA involving the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). Anyone who looked online for USDA’s Estimated Weekly Meat Production under Federal Inspection (SJ_LS711) or Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection (SJ_LS712)) on Thursday and Friday found this statement: “The slaughter data for this report is currently unavailable, and it is not known when the issue will be resolved. This report will be released again after the data is available. We apologize for the inconvenience.”

It’s a bit more than an “inconvenience!”

The situation is due to problems getting data from USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service to the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) and Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). Such inter-agency foul-ups are nothing new. Recall late last year – and on a few occasions earlier this year – that data on imports from Canada were not published due to difficulties in getting the information from federal inspectors at border crossings.


A Five-Year Recap of Porcine Circovirus
Sometimes (say, when you’re waiting for the fields to dry out so you can go about the business of spring planting) there is value in spending a little time recalling past successes.

Such is the case with porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) in growing pigs in North America since commercial vaccines became available in 2007. Figure 1 shows the proportion of cases in which the University of Minnesota Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory has detected PCV2 from tissue samples by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing. The overall trend for virus detection followed closely our observation of the decline in clinical case submissions of circovirus disease that coincided with widespread vaccine application.

As the graph shows, we still find virus in a low proportion of tissue cases, often at low concentrations and in the absence of lesions. We also find occasional clinical cases, with the classic clinical presentation and gross and histologic lesions. Most often, these cases are from herds that are located in remote regions that up to now had not needed to vaccinate.


Members Call for Investigation of HSUS' Tax Status
Congressmen have asked the U.S. Treasury Department to investigate the “apparent improper activities” of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) as it relates to its tax-exempt status. In a letter to the Treasury Department’s Inspector General, the members said, “Over the past two years, this organization has conducted substantial political activities within Missouri that brought into question its tax exempt 501 (c) (3) status.” The members also said, “We believe that HSUS’s own public documents show beyond question that lobbying is a ‘substantial part’ of its activities, and feel that IRS’s failure to act is attributable to the politically sensitive nature of HSUS’s activities.” The Missouri members signing the letter were Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-MO), Vicky Hartzler (R-MO), Sam Graves (R-MO), Jo Ann Emerson (R-MO) and Billy Long (R-MO). Congressman Don Young (R-AK) also signed the letter.

Rural Dust Legislation — Congresswoman Kristi Noem (R-SD) has introduced legislation, H.R. 1633, the “Farm Dust Regulation Prevention Act of 2011,” that would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from implementing additional dust regulations in rural areas. The legislation prevents revision of the current dust standard for one year. It also provides flexibility for states and localities to regulate “nuisance dust.” According to the legislation, if there is not state or local regulation in place, the EPA must determine that the type of dust or particulate matter in question causes adverse health effects and that the benefits of further EPA regulation outweigh the costs to the local and regional communities.


Indiana Proposes Animal Care Rules
The Indiana State Board of Animal Health (BOAH) has voted to establish minimum standards of care for livestock and poultry in Indiana.

Presented for the first time at their mid-April quarterly board meeting, the proposal seeks to create a baseline for care built on five core principles:

• Food and water

• Shelter

• Animal disease, injury and treatment

• Animal stewardship and

• Handling and transportation.

The goal is to provide definition of acceptable levels of care for livestock and poultry species for these five core principles.


May 5-6, 2011: Animal Agriculture Alliance’s 10th Annual Stakeholders Summit, “United We Eat: Securing Animal Agriculture’s Future,” The Westin Arlington Gateway hotel, Arlington, VA. For more information contact: or (703) 562-5160 or

May 11-12, 2011
15th Distillers Grains Symposium Westin Crown Center, Kansas City, Missouri; For more information call 800-759-3448.

May 22-25, 2011: Alltech’s International Animal Health and Nutrition Industry Symposium, Lexington Convention Center, Lexington, KY. For more information contact:

May 24-26, 2011: Pork 101, hosted by the American Meat Science Association in cooperation with the National Pork Board, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX. For more information contact: Deidrea Mabry, program director, American Meat Science Association, 800-517-2672, ext. 12, or

June 8-10, 2011: World Pork Expo, Iowa State Fairgrounds, Des Moines, IA. For more information contact:

Join thousands of your peers for three days of learning, networking, training and fun at the 2011 World Pork Expo. From the world's largest pork-specific trade show and America's Best Genetics Alley, to lunch at the Big Grill, it's all at the Iowa State Fairgrounds, June 8-10. Click here to register.


The October 15 Blueprint edition of National Hog Farmer provides guidelines for building a sound replacement gilt program, including nutritional considerations to maximize genetic potential and the importance of an effective herd health management program. In addition, the issue offers a special section on screening replacement gilt candidates for skeletal and reproductive soundness.

Porcitec Online is the new Web based swine management system. Run reports online. More than 100 reports including management lists, performance analysis, charts, benchmarking, growing, feed and financial. Standard reports, or design your own. True database analysis. Also available, Porcitec for Desktop and Mobile.
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"Weight Watchers" is the focus of the March 15 edition of National Hog Farmer. In this issue, pork producers learn that by doing a better job of picking the right market weight, they can add $3-5/pig in revenue. This issue also outlines eight factors to consider when making marketing decisions and how auto-sort systems challenge pigs' eating behavior. Go to to view the issue.



National Hog Farmer offers 10 posters targeting key production areas, offering guidance in critical areas such as feet and leg soundness and reproduction traits soundness in replacement gilts. Others include pig anatomy, heat detection, sow condition, etc. All posters are in English. Select posters are translated to Spanish, Chinese and Japanese.



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It's Expo time! Thousands of producers and industry professionals from throughout the world will attend. Don't miss three jam-packed days of learning, networking and training as you discover the latest trends, products and innovations. And, don't forget the fun - Click here for details!

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