ASF Spread to the Dominican Republic and to Commercial Swine Herds in Germany Raise Concern in North America

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Farmscape for August 16, 2021

Full Interview 18:59 Listen

The Manager of  the Canada West Swine Health Intelligence Network suggests two new developments in the movement of African Swine Fever merit the attention of North American pork producers. In mid-July Germany reported its first cases of African Swine Fever in commercial pigs housed outdoors near the border with Poland and later last month the USDA identified African Swine Fever in samples collected from the Dominican Republic. Canada West Swine Health Intelligence Network Manager Dr. Jette Christensen says these outbreaks demand our attention and a closer look.

Clip-Dr. Jette Christensen-Canada West Swine Health Intelligence Network:
We had a couple of outbreaks of African Swine Fever in domestic pigs, so in farmed pigs in Germany. These cases were close to areas where they have control in place for African Swine Fever in wild pigs so there is evidence here of potential spillover from wild pigs to domestic pigs in Germany. They’re handling the situation so that is not too worrisome. I’m pretty sure that the German authorities are capable of handling the situation but it’s something we need to pay attention to. The other is we’ve had confirmed cases reported from the Dominican Republic. It’s widespread or relatively widespread in the Dominican Republic even to the border of Haiti. That is very close to home. The concern here is, we already talked about COVID restrictions being lifted. The Caribbean is a vacation destination for many Canadians so what we really need to be careful about here is people returning from the Caribbean, that they don’t get into swine barns and can bring African Swine Fever with them.

Dr. Christensen says, while border control is one line of defense, the second line of defense, that producers have more control over, is restricting entry of people that have come from outside of Canada.

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