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Fourth Canadian farm hit by pig killing virus: Ontario official

(Reuters) - The piglet killing Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus has spread to a fourth farm in the Canadian province of Ontario, the provincial government said on Wednesday, despite the hog industry's efforts to stop it by disinfecting delivery trucks and clothing used on farms.

The virus has killed more than 1 million piglets in the United States but it has so far been contained within Canada to southern Ontario farms. The fourth case has been confirmed in Norfolk County along the north shore of Lake Erie, said Mark Cripps, a spokesman for Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne.

The other confirmed cases are farms further west in Middlesex County and near Chatham-Kent.

"Given the virulent nature of this virus, it is disappointing, but not unexpected that PED would be found in Canada and it is likely that more cases will be identified in the coming days and weeks," Cripps said in an email.

Ontario confirmed the first Canadian case last week.

PEDv - which causes diarrhea, vomiting and severe dehydration in hogs - has turned up in 23 of the 50 states since its discovery in the United States last April.

The virus, which is already established in Europe and Asia, poses no threat to humans and is not a food safety risk.

(Reporting by Rod Nickel in Winnipeg, Manitoba; Editing by Grant McCool)

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