Beginning May 5th the National Pork Board launched a rather impressive campaign, to assure the American Consumer, that Pork is safe. This would appear to have been sparked by news of a pig in a Canadian Pork Operation has contracted the H1N1 virus, this was transmitted from a human to the pig.
According to Tom Vilsack (Secretary of Agriculture) “there are no reports, that H1N1 is infected any US swine.” He also points out that “this is not a Foodborne Illness the American food supply is safe and pork and pork products are safe. As is the case with all meat and poultry, safe handling and cooking practices should be used to kill any germs or bacteria that could make you sick.” Vilsack also points out “As a precaution, people with flu-like symptoms should not interact with swine, and swine showing influenza symptoms should be kept away from the public and brought to the attention of the State Animal Health Authorities or USDA. Proper biosecurity measures – as in any influenza situation – will protect against the spread of virus. ”
As an avid bbq cook myself, pork is very much a part of the menu, and will continue to be. Pork Producers, the BBQ’ers of America are by your side, keep producing safe pork, and we will continue cooking it and eating it!