Pig virus depleting swine inventory in Oklahoma

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – Oklahoma has lost about 8 percent of its swine inventory due to a virus sweeping across the country, and the executive director of the Oklahoma Pork Council says the loss has driven consumer prices higher.

Experts now predict that prices are going to rise another 10 to 12 percent throughout the summer. Low supplies have already driven domestic prices 40 percent higher in recent months and current exports are up 10 percent compared with a year ago.

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack on June 5 ordered producers, veterinarians and diagnostic labs to report positive occurrences of the virus porcine epidemic diarrhea, or PED.

State Department of Agriculture veterinarian says the virus is a species-specific infection and can’t be passed on to humans.

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