Since we’re raising hogs and selling them for meat, you might be interested in how the H1N1 (swine flu) virus is impacting pork producers.The biggest effect it’s having on us is the drop in prices for hogs. We’re getting less money for them. Why? Because there’s less demand for pork now. Why? Because some countries are not allowing US pork to be imported, and because people think they can get the flu from eating bacon. Really? Do you really think that?
On April 29, the CDC announced that swine flu would no longer be referred to as swine flu, but as the “2009 H1N1 flu.” It’s less catchy, but more accurate. For one thing, there is no evidence that this virus makes pigs really sick. And the H1N1 virus actually contains genes from swine, avian and human flus. The virus also cannot be spread through pork products — you can’t contract swine flu by eating bacon, hot dogs or anything else that was once a pig. Nor will culling pigs, as authorities did in Egypt, do anything to stem the spread of the disease. H1N1 has jumped to humans and is passing easily from person to person, so it’s now a human flu that needs to be controlled in us, not the pigs.
Taking that a step further, we need to protect our pigs from you, the human, because if they get the flu, we lose a lot more than I like to think about. Our ag publications are telling us how to take strict biosecurity measures to protect our herd from the virus. No more little kids visiting with the little piggies.
Come on people! I promise you won’t get “swine” flu from pork. Have a pork chop for dinner. Would you like a little inspiration? Here’s an easy marinade recipe to try. You can’t go wrong when you combine pork chops and beer! Marinate your pork for 2-24 hours and then grill it.
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 cup beer, room temperature
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger root