December 14, 2018

Malaysia declared free from African swine fever: Minister

09 September 2018, 03:22 | Silvia Roy

CC BY 2.0 Liz West

CC BY 2.0 Liz West

"With the way the disease spreads, we are particularly concerned about the risk of African swine fever arriving in this country through infected meat from numerous regions which now export pig meat products to New Zealand".

The UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) is concerned that the swine disease could threaten countries in Southeast Asia.

The African swine fever spreading rapidly in China is "here to stay", the UN Food and Agriculture Organization said on Friday, adding that it was nearly certain to spread to other Asian countries.

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Wantanee Kalpravidh, regional manager of the FAO Emergency Centre for Transboundary Animal Diseases (ECTAD) in Asia, said: "It's critical that this region be ready for the very real possibility that (swine fever) could jump the border into other countries".

Nine other outbreaks have been reported across northeastern and eastern China, spanning some 2,500 kilometers, since August 1.

Pigs being raised in a farm outside Shanghai, China. It has shut live pig markets in the regions, effectively preventing slaughterhouses and meat processing factories from using pigs or pork from affected regions.

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The outbreaks have pushed up pork prices in the country's south as demand grows ahead of a week-long holiday in October and also raised the prospect of more imports.

Travelers from Shenan province arriving in South Korea voluntarily handed over pig products that were subsequently tested and found by authorities to harbor traces of the virus, the Korea Times reported on its web site last month.

"Judging from the current situation, although the situation in China is complicated and the task of prevention and control is extremely arduous, the current epidemic is generally under control", Guang added.

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Many countries, including Australia, ban pork and pork-containing products from China because of the risk of introduction of another livestock scourge, foot-and-mouth disease.

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