It’s a scenario that animal industry groups and farmers in Iowa hope they never have to face again: an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD). The last outbreak in the United States was in 1929. However, as more people travel and as more animals are moved, it’s important that farmers know the threat of a foreign animal disease like FMD exists.

That’s why leaders from animal industry groups met recently to talk about a plan should Iowa see an outbreak.

“If this foreign animal disease comes in, we have to be able to try to prevent it from further spreading as soon as possible so that our markets, our economy can be maintained,” said David Schmitt, state veterinarian for the state of Iowa.

FMD is a highly...