Science Page: Foreign animal disease and Secure Pork Supply: the importance of a Premises Identification Number

This is our Friday rubric: every week a new Science Page from the Bob Morrison’s Swine Health Monitoring Project. The previous editions of the science page are available on our website.

This week, the MSHMP team in collaboration with Dr. Marie Culhane shares why having a Premises Identification Number (PIN) is important in the context of Secure Pork Supply.

Key Points:

  • In the event of a Foreign Animal Disease outbreak it is required for all swine premises to have a Premises Identification Number
  • Having correct location data associated with PINs is imperative for responding to an FAD at a farm or large scale level
  • Validating and correcting information associated with PINs is an important step in FAD preparedness

What is a PIN?

A federal swine Premises Identification Number (PIN) is a unique, seven character ID, allocated to a premises where swine are produced, kept or moved through.The PIN is a key component in identifying and tracking swine as they move through the United States.The USDA APHIS PIN allocator generates a PIN once a premise has been registered through a state’s animal health official.

What is it used for?

PINs are essential for continuity of business (COB) during a Foreign Animal Disease (FAD) event.Any premises wishing to move pigs during an FAD event must have a PIN.

Unfortunately, there are two common problems in the industry, creating poor PIN information:

  • incorrect address linked to a site
  • two  geographically distinct sites sharing the same PIN

It is important to find and correct these or other issues that are identified for an existing
PIN. An easy way to identify issues is to validate the locations associated with aPIN using a mapping site such as Google Maps to check the accuracy of the address and coordinates.

To correct these errors it will be necessary to apply for a new PIN via the state’s animal health official.