America has a pork credibility problem. As of this week, France is seeking to ban the import of all pork, pork-based products, and pig sperm from the United States over fears that porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDv) could spread to European markets.
PEDv, in case you missed it, has already killed an estimated 10 percent of America's pigs, according to the National Pork Producers Council. That's about seven million pigs. The virus, which primarily attacks piglets and causes death by dehydration, has appeared in 30 U.S. states. "This disease worries us," French farm ministry deputy director Jean-Luc Angot told IBT. "Because the economic consequences would be dramatic if it hit our farms in Europe and notably in France."
Pork prices have risen 12 percent, and there are fears they could go higher. The USDA is even considering a mandate that would make reporting any suspected cases of PEDv compulsory for pork manufacturers.
Should that happen, the bacon strips in your freezer would become powerful bartering tools. Better start stocking up.