State Fair officials: no swine concerns after virus at Maryland fairs

HANOVER COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — The State Fair of Virginia is back in Doswell Friday. That means food, fun and animals.

Earlier this month, fairs in Maryland were hit with swine flu.

The Maryland Department of Health said a dozen people contracted a strain of the flu after having close contact with sick animals. There were seven cases stemming from pigs at the Charles County Fair and five from Anne Arundel County Fair and The Great Frederick Fair.

Swine exhibits were canceled last week by order of the Secretary of Agriculture out of an abundance of caution.

Officials with the State Fair of Virginia said there is currently no concern for something like that in the Commonwealth.

Spokesperson Sherri McKinney said all livestock — not just pigs — are checked at least 30 days before they arrive. Then, they are checked by a second set of people once they get to the fair.

So far, no animals coming to the State Fair of Virginia have tested positive for any illness.

“These health regulations are taken very seriously to protect our animal population and the health of our fairgoers,” said McKinney. “Due to our strict regulations, no animal on the premise will be infected.”

The State Fair of Virginia runs Sept. 29 to Oct. 8.

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