NPPC supports last Friday’s decision by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to temporarily stop shipments to the United States of pork from Poland. The USDA has suspended entry of imports of fresh and frozen pork and pork products from Poland while it completes a review of that country’s export protocols.
According to the USDA, “As part of a routine review of ongoing operations, it came to our attention that one Polish facility exporting pork to the U.S. has done so in contravention of the stringent requirements in place to prevent the spread of serious diseases of livestock, like ASF.”
USDA’s action was taken out of an abundance of caution to ensure that the United States remains free of African Swine Fever (ASF), a highly contagious, trade-limiting pig disease with no cure. USDA has been closely monitoring ASF’s spread in Eastern Europe – parts of Poland have the disease – and in Asia.
The disease underscores the need for the United States to be better prepared to address foreign animal diseases, including by establishing a more robust vaccine bank to deal with an outbreak of Foot-and-Mouth Disease (FMD), another trade-limiting disease endemic in many parts of the world.
NPPC supports in the 2018 Farm Bill mandatory funding for an FMD vaccine bank and other disease-prevention programs.