Pig Farmers, Industry Leaders Gather for US SHIP Delegates Meeting

The U.S. Swine Health Improvement Program, also known as U.S. SHIP, continues to see growth and acceptance within the pork industry. A recent House of Delegates meeting discussed key issues and voted on the standards and requirements for the voluntary USDA pilot program. Dr. Tyler Holck, senior program director, said the recent meeting brought in 300 industry stakeholders and pig farmers to become more involved in the development of standards.

“There were basically five standards or requirements for the program that were approved as well as resolutions, which means, hey, what should we be working on going forward? And probably one of the, as a result of this transitioning from a pilot to a USDA program, this was the first time that we elected our committee.” 

Dr. Holck said one area discussed was biosecurity and traceability.

“The delegates supported a resolution to further incorporate Secure Pork Supply Plan, and specifically to work collaboratively with the National Pork Board to focus on feral pig risk mitigation. There was lots of discussion and debate with regard to traceability. and a resolution was approved to move forward with a pilot project to assess repositories for storing movement data.” 

U.S. SHIP is designed to be applicable across the full spectrum of pork industry participants. Continual African swine fever and classical swine fever preparedness needs support of animal health officials.

“Saying, this is important, I know where all the pig producers are in my state, whether they’re a show pig producer, or they’re a large commercial producer, lay out a program where we’re sharing information, but it stays at the state level and it’s creating relationships that will be important, whether we ever have a foreign animal disease problem or not.” 

Visit for specific details and enrollment information about this partly Checkoff-funded program.