SAN ANTONIO, Texas — During a recent trip to Texas for meetings with Texas hog producers, members of the National Pork Board gleaned more information on a growing problem for producers in the state — feral hogs.

“The opportunity for these free-roaming pigs to carry disease to other parts of the country is a concern to all pork producers,” said Conley Nelson, National Pork Board president, before the meetings.

Brad Greenway, Pork Board member and producer from South Dakota, said the feral hog problem is spreading to other states, according to report. Addressing the problem is all the more challenging, according to Greenway, because hunting refuges transport feral hogs for hunters. He added that the Pork Board may consider research funding to explore the feral hog problem.

On hand to provide an overview of Texas' efforts to control feral pigs were Dr. Dee Ellis, Texas’ state veterinarian, and Mike Bodenchuk, Texas director of wildlife services for the US Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Inspection Service.

Board members also met with national experts on foreign animal diseases. Dr. Matt Cochran of the Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Lab, and Dr. Melissa Hefferin Berquist, associate director of the National Center for Foreign Animal and Zoonotic Disease Defense, addressed the foreign animal disease threat.