U.S. vaccine bank best insurance policy to respond to FMD outbreak

While it’s been 90 years since the U.S. had a foot-and-mouth disease break, the disease is currently present in 96 countries around the world.


Ann Hess, National Hog Farmer

Oct 01, 2019


If the United States were to break with foot-and-mouth disease -- without a U.S.-based FMD vaccine bank -- there’s a likely chance that it could be 10 years before U.S. agriculture would be able to get rid of it. According to James Roth, a professor in the department of Veterinary Microbiology and Preventative Medicine at Iowa State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, that could mean $128 billion in losses for the U.S. pork and beef sectors, and another $69 billion for the corn and soybean industries.


“But if we have vaccine, there’s good potential if we can use it quickly that we could get the outbreak stopped, become FMD-free in a few to several months and regain our export markets and prevent tens of millions of animals at least from becoming sick and having the devastating economic loss of an entire herd being sick with many dying,” says Roth. “Vaccine is essential, and it needs to be readily available.”


Roth joined representatives from the National Pork Producers Council, the National Milk Producers Federation and the National Corn Growers Association in a press conference today, urging the USDA to move as quickly as possible to establish an FMD vaccine bank...