The National Pork Producers Council and the Nebraska Pork Producers have requested $250 million in aid from federal agriculture officials to help their industry, according to

Advocates of the industry blamed rising feed costs and media's references to the H1N1 virus as "swine flu" for the $1.26 billion loss that has been projected for the sector this year.


Ryan Mead, spokesperson for Progressive Swine Technologies, said that the industry is looking for the government's assurance that it cares for pork producers nationally.

Earlier this month, governors of nine key pork-producing states placed a similar petition before President Barack Obama. However, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack's response to the plea has not been encouraging.