Fairgoer Gives Show Hog H1N1

Preliminary tests show three hogs in Minnesota may have contracted the H1N1 virus, making them the first potential U.S. cases in swine. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced Friday that USDA’s Veterinary Services Laboratories will be conducting confirmatory testing on swine samples collected at the 2009 Minnesota State Fair between Aug. 26 and Sept. 1.

Vilsack stressed that pork is safe to eat and that the finding does not threaten food safety. “I want to remind people that people cannot get this flu from eating pork or pork products,” Vilsack said.

The pigs sampled at the time showed no signs of illness and were apparently healthy. The samples collected were part of a University of Iowa and University of Minnesota cooperative agreement research project funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which documents influenza viruses where humans and pigs interact at events such as fairs.

USDA’s National Veterinary Services Laboratories expects to have confirmatory results within the next few days.


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