The American Association of Swine Veterinarians (AASV) is cautioning that the initial results of its survey of member veterinarians regarding the recent introduction of porcine epidemic diarrhea (PED) virus should be viewed carefully.

The objective of this survey was to determine whether risk factors could be identified that are potentially associated with the introduction of PED virus into the U.S. swine herd.

In developing this survey, AASV worked with National Pork Board, the National Pork Producers Council and USDA’s Center for Epidemiology and Animal Health (CEAH).

More than 100 variables were assessed during the survey. Only seven were considered significantly likely to have some association with the introduction of PED virus into the herds involved with the survey, according to the AASV.

These seven risk factors related to feeding the animals. These questions did not implicate any specific finished feed, feed ingredient, feed manufacturer or ingredient supplier.

“The results of this initial survey should not be over-interpreted. The sample size was small, with many common on-farm practices and potential biases,” stresses Harry Snelson, DVM, director of communications for the AASV.

At this time, all feed and ingredient samples have tested negative for PED virus, and there is no diagnostic indication that feed was in any way related to the introduction of PED virus into the U.S. swine herd.

“The feed industry has been, and continues to be, fully cooperative with all efforts to identify any possible sources of viral introduction. We want to stress that we do not have any evidence that any feed ingredient, finished feed or feed manufacturer was associated with the introduction of PED virus,” he asserts.

AASV, the pork industry and CEAH continue to explore all significant routes of introduction as well as the risk factors associated with the ongoing lateral spread of PED virus.