WVDL Prepared for Agricultural Emergencies

Economic Impact of Foreign Animal Diseases (FADs)


Diseases exotic to the US, referred to as foreign animal diseases or FADs, pose a major threat to US livestock industry (morbidity, mortality, loss of market share, etc). Although foot and mouth disease is often regarded as the prime risk to US animal agriculture, other exotic and endemic diseases are also important:  classical swine fever, avian influenza, bovine spongiform encephalopathy, to name a few.

Early detection and eradication are key components of the USDA response to foreign animal diseases. The WVDL is a core laboratory in the USDA’s National Animal Laboratory Health Network (NALHN). In this capacity the WVDL provides diagnostic testing and surveillance for early detection of FADs and surge-capacity for outbreak situations. Follow the accompanying link to estimates of the economic impact of an FAD.