Virus Causing Price Increase On Bacon


Published 04/09 2014 07:57PM

Updated 04/10 2014 08:44AM

A virus killing pigs across the country has moved into northeast Indiana.

And while it is harmless to people, it could hit us where it hurts the most- our wallets.

WFFT looked into how it's affecting the price of pork products.

Baby pigs are dying across the Hoosier state.

It's called porcine epidemic diarrhea virus, or PEDv, and it's spreading into northeast Indiana.

"It seems to be highly contagious. The virus is spread in the manure of the animals, and so the animals will pick it up if they are exposed to any kind of fecal material,” says Indiana State Board of Animal Health spokesperson Denise Derrer.

Most susceptible are newborn pigs up to two weeks old.

These red counties show where it's spread.

Health experts say the virus is harmless to people.

Ryan Harrell's pig farm in Huntington County has not been infected yet, but the prevention has cost him.

"Washing our vehicles multiple times, washing trailers with disincentive, we've cut off public access to our farm, customers have to go off-site to see any of our animals, feed trucks are not allowed on our properties as well,” Harrell says.

The state animal health board and stores around the region stress this meat is still safe to eat.

However, where it could hit you, if you're buying the good stuff, is right here in your wallet.

"And I think we might see a slight increase down the road sometime this summer, because only naturally we'll have a decrease in the number of pigs that will become marketable that goes to market,” says Allen County Purdue Extension Office Agricultural Educator Gonzalee Martin.

Paul Jamison, owner of Jamison Meats in Fort Wayne, says it already has.

"We haven't seen much of a price increase in pork for the last, at least eight months roughly, in the past month we've seen quite an increase,” Jamison says.

Jamison says it's gone up fifteen percent.

And come this summer could go even higher.

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