September 24, 2017

House Lawmakers and Industry Experts Focused on Vaccine Bank for Livestock in 2018 Farm Bill- Audio

Members of the House Ag committee are giving a lot of weight to the possibility of creating a vaccine bank to stem the risks of an outbreak such as foot-and-mouth disease.

The U.S. has not had FMD since 1929, but lawmakers and animal health experts agree that an outbreak would have devastating repercussions on livestock markets and the industry.

Supporters say that a vaccine bank is like insurance that can reduce the risks of a costly disease outbreak.

House Ag Committee ranking member Collin Peterson of Minnesota says USDA should start working with trading partners to ease concerns about a vaccine before an outbreak actually occurs.

During a hearing with newly confirmed Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue on Wednesday, Peterson used the example of the H5N2 bird flu outbreak to stress the importance of a vaccine bank – when U.S. trading partners became as reluctant about U.S. producers using a vaccine as the actual bird flu virus itself.      Listen —>  Vaccine Bank 1

Secretary Perdue agreed with Peterson.     Listen —>  Vaccine Bank 2

Liz Wagstrom is the chief veterinarian for the National Pork Producers Council in Washington, D.C., and she agrees that a disease outbreak could be devastating to the U.S. industry. We spoke with her about the idea of a vaccine bank during the National Association of Farm Broadcasting’s  “Washington Watch” earlier this month.      Listen —>  Vaccine Bank 3

Wagstrom is hopeful that lawmakers will support the vaccine bank concept in the 2018 farm bill.  Listen —> Vaccine Bank 4

 

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