Emerging infectious diseases have affected animal and human health in recent decades, demonstrated by bovine spongiform encephalopathy, variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD), Hendra virus, and Nipah virus, among others. Numerous authors have suggested using the biological, ecological, environmental, and societal factors associated with disease emergence to improve prediction; however, interactions among these emergence factors can be complex, making modelling difficult. The goal of this book's subject matter was to develop a method that could assess disease emergence potential for an animal industry using information on disease emergence risk factors. The focus of the book was to assess an industry's overall likelihood of disease emergence rather than assessing the likelihood of emergence of a particular disease. This is an edited, excerpted and augmented edition of a USDA publication.