August 8, 2020

 

North Carolina pig farms suffer little to no impacts from Hurricane Isaias

 

 

Initial reports after Hurricane Isaias made landfall in North Carolina on Monday night, Aug. 3, said that no pig farms experienced any significant issues, according to the North Carolina Pork Council (NCPC).

 

NCPC said that it had received no reports of impacts to anerobic treatment lagoons and only limited reports of farms that had lost power. Wind damage was minimal, it added.

 

It said hurricane preparation has become a year-round practice for pig farmers since Hurricane Floyd hit North Carolina more than 20 years ago and caused widespread damage.

 

"Long before hurricane season arrives, farmers carefully manage treatment lagoons to maintain adequate storage in the event of heavy rains. And as storms approach, farmers prepare for potential power outages, flooding and other disruptions by positioning generators and animal feed on farms and at key locations in hog-producing counties", NCPC said in a blog posted on its website on Aug. 4.

 

"When necessary, animals are moved to higher ground or sent to market early".

 

NCPC also noted that hundreds of lagoons in flood-prone areas have been voluntarily closed and that no new pig farms have been built in the state during the past two decades.

 

Pig farms have historically fared well during hurricanes, such as when two of the strongest hurricanes to strike North Carolina—Hurricanes Matthew and Florence—made limited impacts on pig farms.

 

In 2018 when Florence struck, rivers swelled to record heights and entire communities were inundated by flood waters, but 98% of treatment lagoons performed exactly as intended, suffering little or no damage, according to NCPC.

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