February 11, 2020
Perhaps you saw the news that the World Pork Expo returns for 2020. This is great news for the entire swine industry.
You may recall, the 2019 version was canceled due to the risk potential that African swine fever could make its way to middle America via the thousands of visitors who descend annually in Des Moines for the largest swine-related show. It was a tough, but correct decision by the National Pork Producers Council to cancel last year's event.
One year later, ASF is still spreading on the other side of the globe, but as of yet has not reached the United States. ASF does not present a human health issue, even if a human would consume pork from an infected animal. ASF is very deadly to pigs, and one risk factor has been removed from World Pork Expo, as there will not be live hogs on the grounds.
Historically, live hog shows sponsored by the National Swine Registry and Team Purebred coincide with World Pork Expo. These shows brought in about 1,500 youth and open class participants to show more than 3,500 hogs from 32 states. Last year, even though World Pork Expo was canceled, the pigs still descended upon the Iowa State Fairgrounds. Word on the street was the show was one of the biggest ever.
Late last year it was announced that the 2020 Exposition will move two states over for a June 7-13 run at the Indiana State Fairgrounds in Indianapolis, removing the potential risk of ASF hitching a ride with a World Pork Expo foreign visitor from potentially reaching one of the show pigs.
The 2019 World Pork Expo canceling was not a first, as the 2001 show was called off when foot-and-mouth disease broke in the United Kingdom.
So, you will not see live hogs at the 2020 World Pork Expo. What you will see will be ramped up on-site biosecurity measures that will be revealed as we near the show. Of course, we will share those measures and what you may expect when attending this year's World Pork Expo.
Looking forward to another World Pork Expo, and all is right with the world.
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