QUEBEC, Quebec – The Fédération des producteurs de porc du Quebec (FPPQ) will be part of a major project aimed at controlling and ultimately eradicating the virus that causes porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS).

The organization received C$500,000 in financial assistance to implement the project in five production zones in the Montérégie, Chaudière-Appalaches, Estrie and Centre-du-Québec regions. An additional 15 to 20 production zones will be covered by virus control measures by 2014.

Producers will be responsible for developing strategies to combat PRRS. The disease impacts the health of hog herds by triggering abortions in sows and preventing growth in young pigs. The PRRS virus costs pig producers in Quebec more than C$30 million annually.

"This major project will generate significant benefits in the hog sector,” said Pierre Corbeil, Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food. “By equipping it with the capacity to limit the economic losses currently resulting from this virus, we are working with the industry as it searches for structuring means to improve the financial health of enterprises."

The Support Program for Sectoral Development Strategies provided the money that will be used to implement the PRRS project.