Pallmantur, the Spanish cruise company owned by Royal Caribbean, was all set to make a splash with a new boat and cruise itinerary aimed at the Mexican audience. The boat, the Pacific Dream, would leave from Acapulco with 1,900 passengers and make stops at Ixtapa, Manzanillo, Puerto Vallarta and Cabo San Lucas. The 7-day cruise was seen carrying 60,000 passengers this year alone after the initial voyage on May 10. But just a week or two before the launch date, news of swine flu in Mexico began to spread.
European newspapers have mostly shrugged off the World Health Organization’s decision to stop referring to “swine flu” and switch to using the virus’ scientific name, influenza A(H1N1). A quick scan of today’s papers shows copious and continued references to swine flu, pig flu, grippe porcine, Schweinegrippe and other variations. The WHO’s fellow UN body, the Food and Agriculture Organization, justifies the name switch by noting that there is currently no evidence that the new virus “is circulating in pigs in Mexico or anywhere else in the world” and because “consumption of pig meat does not bring any increased risk to the consumer.” But it seems unlikely that newspaper headline writers will find the scientific name for the new flu virus as appealing as the pithier porcine version.
Commodities, Economy, Politics, Swine Flu, Washington / 1 Comment
Another reminder that all politics are local comes from Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, who opened a press conference today with a talk that included this quote:
“Before I open for questions, I want to remind everybody that the Center for Disease Control says that you can’t get swwine flu from eating pork. So I hope Iowans will support family farmers down the road and have a pork chop for dinner tonight. I had a pork chop last night.”
The senator repeated the details of last night repast in an apperanace this morning on Fox Business Network, in which he decried the potential for hyperinflation to come once the recession ends because of the big federal budget about to be passed by the Congress. He said even the name swine flu was a misnomer because the disease is a mixture of different strains.
The senator’s comments and meal choices have not not been successful in arresting the decline of U.S. hog prices since the swine flu outbreak hasd been widely noted.