Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) has not yet had a significant impact on the U.S. pork supply chain, according to Jody Faragen, executive vice president and chief financial officer of Hormel Foods. Faragen briefly discussed PEDV's impact on the pork industry during Hormel Foods' third quarter conference call on August 22.
"We're really not seeing any impact on the supply in the Midwest. Actually, we're looking at seasonally high numbers for this last quarter," Faragen said.
PEDV was first discovered in the United States in April, which was during the end of Hormel's second quarter of fiscal year 2013. It became more widespread during Hormel's third quarter of fiscal year 2013.
According to figures released by the National Animal Health Laboratory Network on August 21, the number of confirmed cases of PEDV in the U.S. is nearing 500, with 36 new cases being reported during the week of August 12. However, those numbers don't reflect the total amount of pigs affected, as producers are not required to report suspected cases of porcine epidemic diarrhea virus to government agencies.
Because the disease can have a 100 percent mortality rate with piglets, PEDV's biggest supply chain impact is expected to emerge in December when piglets lost in June would go to market, according to industry leaders. The affected animals from finishing operations typically survive.