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Smithfield Sends Update to Employees on Testing Process at Veracruz Joint Venture
Date:5/2/2009

SMITHFIELD, Va., May 1 /PRNewswire/ -- C. Larry Pope, President and Chief Executive Officer of Smithfield Foods, Inc. (NYSE: SFD), sent the following update to all employees on the progress of the testing being conducted at its joint venture operation in Veracruz:

To Our Employees:

The media continues to cover the global A(H1N1) influenza outbreak on a minute-to-minute basis, and while we would like to accommodate them and the public about the day-to-day status of the testing being conducted at our joint venture farm in Veracruz, it is physically impossible. Unfortunately, the testing and evaluation process takes time. Nevertheless, we have promised to keep you apprised of events, and therefore, in keeping with that commitment, here is the latest "news."

Due to a lack of any connection to swine, the World Health Organization has renamed this virus A(H1N1). In addition, the CDC and all other regulatory and scientific bodies have confirmed that you cannot get A(H1N1) influenza from eating pork or pork products, and there is no evidence that any of the people affected had contact with pigs.

We are pleased that the continuing coverage has included the affirmation by public health officials, government officials, including President Obama and others, that the A(H1N1) influenza virus is not transmitted by food and can only pass from human to human. I am also pleased to reconfirm that there is no evidence at this time that the hogs at Veracruz, or anywhere else, have been infected with A(H1N1) influenza.

This notwithstanding and so the public can have full confidence in the health of our Mexican pig herd, yesterday we submitted samples from our farm in Veracruz for further testing under the direction of Mexican governmental authorities, including genetic sequence analysis that wi
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SOURCE Smithfield Foods, Inc.
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