Swine veterinarian Bill Minton thought the baby pigs dying at a farm in western Ohio had a bad case of gastro-enteritis and was stumped when lab results came back with no indication of what had killed them.
It took nearly 30 days – and hundreds more pigs dying in five other states – for Minton to learn the farm was ground zero for a virulent, fast-spreading virus that had never been seen before in the United States.
A year later, the disease, called Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus (PEDv), has wiped out an estimated 10 percent of the U.S. pig population, helped push pork prices to record highs, and raised questions about U.S. oversight of the livestock industry and measures designed to protect the nation’s food supply.
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