North Carolina Pig Farms Survive Hurricane Isaias

( National Pork Board and the Pork Checkoff )

Rapid flooding, extreme winds, power outages and possible tornadoes were reported as Hurricane Isaias made landfall in North Carolina on Monday night. The violent storm producing heavy rainfall traveled directly through the state’s major pork producing counties, but initial reports indicate that no pig farms experienced any significant issues.

“There are no reports of impacts to anerobic treatment lagoons and only limited reports of farms that have lost power. Wind damage has been minimal,” North Carolina Pork reports.

Isaias made landfall as a Category 1 hurricane at 11:10 p.m. EDT Monday near Ocean Isle Beach, N.C., with maximum sustained winds of 85 mph, the Weather Channel reports.

In North Carolina, the No. 2 pork-producing state, hurricane preparation has become a year-round practice for pig farmers since Hurricane Floyd struck nearly 20 years ago.

“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,” NC Pork reports. “When necessary, animals are moved to higher ground or sent to market early.”

This preparation has helped North Carolina pig farms fare well. During Hurricane Florence in 2018, rivers swelled to record heights and entire communities were inundated by flood waters. However, 98% of treatment lagoons performed exactly as intended, suffering little or no damage, NC Pork reports.

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