African swine fever spreads to fourth province in SA

15 Mai, 2019, 10:09 | Auteur: Yves Courtet
  • File Pork is a staple of Chinese cuisine

Concerns about the spread of African swine fever to the U.S. recently led organisers to cancel the World Pork Expo scheduled for June in the state of Iowa. More than 1.2 million pigs, or over four percent of Vietnam's total pig population, were infected with the disease and culled.

The latest outbreak of the severe haemorrhagic disease affecting pigs has been reported in the Heilbron area in the Free State.

It's understood it was also detected in the North West, Mpumalanga and Gauteng provinces last month.

"The risk of the virus spreading further is very high and the evolution of the outbreak is complicated", the government said in a statement.

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It said many provinces had failed to detect outbreaks and cull infected pigs properly due to a lack of funds and the space needed for burying the dead pigs.

Unlike swine flu, African swine fever can not be transmitted to humans and Chan said well-cooked pork remained safe for consumption.

Unfortunately, the swine fever has not been contained to Vietnam and has spread to China, which, according to the Singapore Food Agency, is still on the agency's list of approved pork exporting nations, while Vietnam is not approved to export pork to Singapore.

A health official of the SAR government declared that an African swine fever (ASF) case was recorded at a slaughterhouse in China's Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) and about 6,000 pigs would be isolated. Since the first instances of the virus came to light in China in 2018, the epidemic has spread through the entire country, as well to neighbouring Mongolia and Cambodia, besides Vietnam, the report said.

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