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All Eyes on 'North American Flu'

539w.jpg You don't have to have a barn full of hogs to worry about the implications the recent swine flu epidemic will have on consumer confidence in agriculture and food safety. While it's safe to say that this flu strain doesn't come from pork products or live pigs, the misconception is there, and our friends in swine production are taking the heat. Yesterday, I kept close watch on the media coverage of the swine flu, and I have compiled a list of headlines worth taking a look at. Find out how the Humane Society of the United States is capitalizing over the growing panic of this flu, similar to their fear-mongering tactics with SARS, BSE and bird flu. Read how pork producers are keeping their hogs safe from this consumer illness. Educate yourself with the facts to avoid catching this flu. Finally, say a prayer for those that have been infected with this illness and that public health officials continue to keep us safe. What are your concerns about the swine flu, both as a producer and as a consumer? What is the word in your area about this outbreak?

Animal Activists Capitalize on Swine Flu Hysteria...For animal rights activists at the Humane Society of the United States, the opportunity to use “swine flu” to scare American meat-eaters was apparently too tempting to resist.

Swine Flu Fears Hit Wall Street ...Economists talk about the implications of a swine flu outbreak on the U.S. economy and other market issues.

Hog farmers fear: not germs, but consumers...The swine flu has filled the area's hog farmers with fear — not that they will catch a deadly disease from their animals, but that grocery shoppers will become needlessly afraid of buying their product.

Pork Producers Protecting Precious Livestock...No Reported U.S. Hogs Infected By Swine Flu

Indiana State Veterinarian says Swine Flu Not Affecting Pork Products...It’s been originally dubbed swine flu, but unfortunately that may have some unintended consequences for our swine industry.

What is swine influenza? Flu mutates constantly, so it is common for new strains to emerge. Pigs can also be infected with both human and avian influenza, and the current circulating swine flu strain appears to contain genetic elements from all three.

History Says Avoid Virus Hysteria... Let the public health experts freak out about swine flu. The rest of us should relax.

Quick BEEF Daily Fact: Still looking for more information on the North American Flu? The Center for Disease Control has the facts to answer all of your questions and concerns. Example Q&A: Can people catch swine flu from eating pork? No. Swine influenza viruses are not transmitted by food. You can not get swine influenza from eating pork or pork products.