The Hawaii Department of Agriculture (HDOA) has issued a quarantine order stopping the movement of pigs on Oahu after an outbreak of a serious swine disease, Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus (PEDv), was confirmed on a farm in Waianae Valley. PEDv causes significant sickness in swine and causes high mortality in piglets. The virus only affects pigs and does not pose a risk to humans or pets. It is not a food safety concern.
Last week, the farm called HDOA’s Animal Disease Control Branch to report many cases of diarrhea among their swine. Symptoms of PEDv in swine include acute watery diarrhea and dehydration. State veterinarians took samples from the farm and sent them to the Kansas State University Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory. Confirmation of PEDv was received this morning.
Acting State Veterinarian Dr. Isaac Maeda issued a quarantine order on the farm to contain the outbreak and also to stop the movement of pigs on the west side of Oahu. No swine shall be moved east past Nanakuli from Makaha, Waianae and Nanakuli Valley. The order also restricts movement of swine from Oahu to neighbor islands.
Disease control measures have been instituted on the farm, which has a total of about 150 pigs. About 25% of the pigs (mainly piglets) died last week. However, it appears that the remaining pigs are recovering and no deaths have occurred on the farm since the weekend. It is not known at this point how the virus may have come to Hawaii; however, the farm did not import any swine.
“Our current focus is to contain the virus and prevent its spread on Oahu,” said Dr. Maeda. “We will also survey other swine operations and try to determine if the virus has spread.”
PEDv is common in parts of Asia and Europe and was first confirmed in the U.S. in May 2013. To date, 32 states have reported PEDv and it is estimated to have killed up to eight million young pigs.
In July 2014, HDOA increased swine import requirements to help prevent the entry of swine infected with PEDv into Hawaii. This included exclusion of swine from premises with PEDv and negative tests for PEDv prior to shipping. ( http://hdoa.hawaii.gov/ai/ldc/importing-livestock/swine/ )
Statewide there are about 230 pig farms – 70 of which are on Oahu. Most are small operations.