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Senate Plans to Finish Farm Bill

The Senate hopes to complete action on the 2013 farm bill this week.  There are still more than 100 amendments that have been filed to be considered.  Votes are expected on amendments concerning crop insurance, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and other issues.  The House of Representatives is expected to consider the farm bill the week of June 17.   

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Lenders Workshop Highlights Risk Management


Attuned to the times, this year’s 6th annual Pork Lenders meeting, designed specifically for members of the banking community, will provide up-to-date financial, market, export and legislative information. This year’s conference will also offer more information about a farm-level risk management tool the Minnesota Pork Producers Association has developed.

The meeting will be July 16 at the Country Inn and Suites, 1900 Premiere Drive, Mankato, MN, from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. The cost is $20 per attendee and includes lunch, breaks and handouts. The preregistration deadline is July 9.

Providing the keynote speech on the market outlook will be Steve Meyer, president of Paragon Economics, Inc., and a livestock and agricultural economics specialist. Meyer will explore what current economic conditions mean for pork producers and give his view on national and global factors influencing pork demand, feed costs and trade.

Providing the state and national public policy update will be

Minnesota Pork Producers Association Executive Director David Preisler, who will discuss regulatory and marketplace shifts affecting pork producers. Preisler will also discuss how producer certifications, on-farm third-party audits and retail decisions regarding production practices are impacting farms.

Providing information on a tool that is available to members of the Minnesota Pork Producers Association designed to help them take a proactive approach to non-market risk management challenges facing the pork industry will be
Minnesota Pork Producers Association Director of Education Jill Resler.

For questions and registration about the Pork Lenders meeting, contact Jill Resler at (507) 345-8814 or [email protected]. For online registration or to download a registration form, go to on-line registration.



South Dakota Lab Develops Tests for PEDV

The Animal Disease Research and Diagnostic Laboratory (ADRDL) at South Dakota State University has developed tests to detect Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus (PEDV) in pigs.

In recent weeks, swine herds in several midwestern states have experienced signs of illness attributed to this emerging virus. Until now, PEDV had not previously been detected in the United States. This virus causes diarrhea and dehydration in pigs of all ages, but is most severe in young baby pigs. In this age group, mortality has been reported to be as high as 40% in some herds.

Diagnostic lab scientists at the ADRDL, working together with other midwestern diagnostic laboratories, have developed a molecular test that detects the presence of PEDV in stool samples or tissues from affected pigs. The test can be run in conjunction with a molecular test that detects Transmissible gastroenteritis (TGE) virus, which is a closely related but separate virus that can cause many of the same signs in swine herds.

Swine producers who detect signs of diarrhea in their herds should contact their veterinarian to coordinate sample submission for PEDV testing. Once the samples are received at the ADRDL, results generally are available the next working day. The results can be accessed by the veterinarian 24 hours a day through the ADRDL's secure, password-protected web reporting site.

SDSU scientists are working on this emerging disease threat from many different angles, which will eventually mean the development of additional diagnostic techniques, which will help swine producers more rapidly and more conveniently detect the spread of the virus through their herds. These additional tests will include blood tests to detect exposure to the virus as well as methods to "fingerprint" individual virus isolates.

Information about PEDV is rapidly changing. Swine producers who suspect the presence of the virus in their herd should contact their veterinarian for information about treatment and methods to limit the spread of the virus between groups on the farm and between farms.