What's in a name? A lot, according to concerned pork producers.
They say the label 'Swine Flu' should be dropped.
"It's an unfortunate choice of words," says Tammy Vaasenn, Director of Operations for the Wisconsin Pork Producers Association , "It does trouble us. There's no indication a pig gave it to a human. To call it Swine Flu is a bit misleading."
Farm groups and animal health organizations even have some alternative names, the top recommendations being 'North American influenza' or 'Hybrid Influenza,' because the strain in questions contains elements of human, avian and swine flu.
Vaassen says consumer feedback so far has been positive—people seem to be getting the message that the virus isn't spread through pork products—but the market is still taking a hit.
"We've seen a pretty significant drop in the future and cash prices over the last couple days," Vaassen notes. "Producers have been operating in red ink for the last year-and-a-half now. This is certainly the time of year we start to see our market pick up."
While most of the media reports have focused on the risk to humans, pork producers have also been put on alert, and asked to be vigilant.
"(They've) been encouraged to review their bio-security plans…which is something they practice on a regular basis."
It should be noted North American Influenza has not been detected in the country's swine herd.
Update: U.S. Health Secretary Tom Vilsack says we should call it by its scientific name: 'H1N1 Influenza A.' The World Health Organization (WHO) agrees to drop the name "swine" flu to avoid confusion about whether eating pork is dangerous, and instead use the technical identification.