USDA confirms H1N1 in Minnesota pigs

Oct 19, 2009 By HENRY C. JACKSON , Associated Press Writer

(AP) -- At least one pig from Minnesota has tested positive for the H1N1 virus, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Monday, the first case of a pig contracting the virus in the United States.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said in a statement that USDA officials have begun to reach out to U.S. trade partners and international organizations to emphasize that H1N1, also known as , cannot be contracted by eating pork products.

"We have fully engaged our trading partners to remind them ... that there is no scientific basis to restrict trade in pork and pork products," Vilsack said. "People cannot get this flu from eating pork or pork products. Pork is safe to eat."

The USDA's National Veterinary Services Laboratories confirmed the presence of H1N1 after an initial test suggested that as many as three pigs may have had the virus. USDA is continuing to conduct tests to confirm other potential positive tests from the pig samples.

The original samples were taken as a part of a university research project from pigs shown at the Minnesota State Fair between Aug. 26. and Sept. 1.

USDA officials have said that the pigs did not show signs of sickness, and officials suggested they likely contracted the virus from some of the nearly 1.8 million people who visited the fair.

Officials also said the infection of a so-called show pig doesn't indicate an infection of commercial herds because show pigs are in separate segments of agriculture than the swine industry.

Agriculture officials have expected H1N1 to find its way to domestic pigs this year. Herd infections were already reported in Canada, Australia, Argentina, Ireland, the United Kingdom and Norway. A hog vaccine for the virus is being developed but isn't yet available.

©2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Explore further: CDC: Raw tuna suspected as Salmonella source in outbreak

Related Stories

Minn. pigs may have tested positive for swine flu

Oct 17, 2009

(AP) -- Preliminary tests show three pigs in Minnesota may have contracted the swine flu virus making them the first potential U.S. cases in swine, agricultural officials said Friday. They stressed the finding does not threaten ...

Vaccine may protect pigs from human swine flu

Sep 03, 2009

(AP) -- Humans may not be the only ones guarding against swine flu by the time cold weather ushers in influenza season. The flu namesakes could also be getting new vaccinations.

Swine flu goes person-to-pig; could it jump back?

May 04, 2009

(AP) -- Now that the swine flu virus has passed from a farmworker to pigs, could it jump back to people? The question is important, because crossing species again could make it more deadly.

Recommended for you

Aspirin to improve leg ulcers

6 hours ago

Researchers are looking at whether aspirin can improve the healing rates of leg ulcers in older adults.

Sierra Leone marks grim Ebola anniversary

10 hours ago

On May 24 last year a pregnant woman and an older housewife staggered into Kenema hospital in eastern Sierra Leone and were diagnosed within a day as the country's first Ebola cases.

MSF fighting cholera outbreak in Tanzania refugee camps

May 24, 2015

Medical charity Medecins sans Frontieres (MSF, Doctors Without Borders) said Sunday it had launched emergency treatment centres in Tanzania, where thousands of Burundians fleeing unrest have been hit by cholera.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.