Sunday, 7 August 2011

CSF - the aniversary of the 2000 Classical Swine Fever epidemic

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Today, the 8th August, is the anniversary of Classical Swine Fever being found in English Pigs in 2000.

CSF was the second of a series of three British pig epidemics. It arrived into pigs already sick with Circovirus (PMWS – PDNS).

The third, the even more disastrous Foot and Mouth disease, became an epidemic the following February at a huge human, animal and financial cost. It even delayed a general election before being finally overcome.

But Circovirus remains to this very day, needing huge quantities of antibiotics to deal with co-infections. The antibiotics give rise to antibiotic resistant disease: dangerous to livestock, their keepers and public health.

Circovirus is the reason why British pig productivity is 20-25 per cent per sow below the near European continental farmers. It is not bad breeding, inadequate feed, or bad husbandry: it is endemic disease.

Carcase weight (kg) per sow per year

Great Britain
1,608
Denmark
2,075
Netherlands
2,279
France
2,109
Germany
1,993
Ireland
1,789
EU Ave
2,000

Source: Pig Cost of Production in Selected Countries, 2009 
Immediate source of above cost of carcase weight statistics  here