New tool available for pork producers 

Technology allows for quick action in the event of a disease outbreak

The National Pork Board recently launched a platform to help pork producers respond quickly to an event such as a foreign animal disease outbreak (FAD). The new technology would allow producers to isolate any affected pigs without involving numerous additional involvement of animals or farms. The new software-based technology tool, free to pork producers through the Pork Checkoff, is called AgView a web application intended for use from a desktop computer, but is accessible from mobile devices.

AgView provides near real-time health and movement status to help the U.S. pork industry rapidly conduct contact-tracing to contain or regionalize a foreign animal disease outbreak such as African swine fever (ASF).

“For the U.S. pork industry, AgView is the Path to Protection for America’s pig farms. When permissioned by producer-users, AgView can provide real-time health status, site and pig movement data from registered farms to state animal health officials to aid in the response of a suspected or confirmed FAD,” said Dave Pyburn, chief veterinarian for the National Pork Board. “Its robust features could help the pork industry rapidly contain or regionalize a potential FAD outbreak,” he said.

According to Pyburn, “As part of an FAD outbreak investigation by state health officials, during a possible outbreak, the officials would review historical animal movements to learn where animals that may have had an FAD have been, along with other animals they could have exposed and are considered at risk.

In addition, AgView uses much of the same data required by participants in the nation’s Secure Pork Supply plan ( “Producers who want to participate need to setup an account in AgView and develop a data connection between their farm data and the AgView system,” Pyburn said. “This is very important because producers have premises identification numbers and robust movement records that can facilitate rapid contact tracing, if ASF occurs here.”

The main features for the input into AgView include:

• Site information (premises identification numbers, type of farm, number of pigs)

• Animal movements, both in-state and out-of-state

• Lab results from participating labs

• Secure Pork Supply documentation

“We just rolled out AgView on Nov. 9, and it’s only one month that it officially became available for the pork industry,” said Mike King, science communications director for the National Pork Board. “One of the key concepts that makes it different from other products for farmers, that this is being driven by all 50 states. Each state veterinarian is really instrumental about how they’ll adopt and integrate AgView.”

AgView can be used by all pork producers and state veterinarians in the U.S. no matter how large the farm is, how many pigs the farm has, the type of pig that is raised at the farm or the business goals of the operation.

“AgView is designed to help the pork industry be more prepared for an FAD,” King said. “So for it to be most successful, adoption by as many producers and state veterinarians will be critical. All U.S. pork producers will benefit from integrating AgView into their farming operations.”

To reassure hog producers, who may be wary revealing details about their farm for use in AgView, security precautions have been taken.

“We follow secure coding guidelines and are pursuing third-party security audit/certification to provide additional assurance to producers and state organizations to ensure we handle data in an appropriate manner in accordance with our industry’s expectations,” said Patrick Webb, DVM, director of swine health at the National Pork Board. “We are also modifying the system to label producer input data as business confidential.”

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