Continuing Spread of ASF Underscores Need for Vigilance

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Farmscape for January 20, 2022

Full Interview 9:00 Listen

The Veterinary Counsel with the Canadian Pork Council says the continuing spread of African Swine Fever underscores the need for vigilance.
Earlier this month the OIE confirmed that African Swine Fever had been found in Italy. Dr. Egan Brockhoff, the Veterinary Counsel with the Canadian Pork Council and a member of the Swine Innovation Porc Coordinated African Swine Fever Research Working Group, says industry and government continue to work on a daily basis on both sides of the fence, efforts to keep the virus out of Canada and on planning and preparedness for what we do if we do get virus in the country.

Clip-Dr. Egan Brockhoff-Canadian Pork Council:
As the virus spreads to more regions throughout the world we just have more virus present on a global level.
Certainly, it increases the risk to North America, to Canada on a marginal level. Every time we add a country or we add a region, it just continues to complicate things. We still have African Swine Fever circulating in the Dominican Republic and Haiti and of course we’re in the middle of winter here and a lot of Canadians, a lot of people from around the world want to go to those warmer spots for a vacation so we have exposure happening from many different potential fronts. As I look around the world we’ve got more virus, more opportunity for virus to move. Canada continues to put efforts in at our borders. We’ve got more detector dogs than we did before, we still have significant restrictions, awareness campaigns at an airport level, at a traveller level. I spoke with a number of international guests that attended the Banff Pork Seminar. They all mentioned to me how good it was to see the Canadian signage at our airports but we continue to have to be vigilant if we’re going to keep this virus out.

Dr. Brockhoff stresses this virus is a human driven disease and we need to make sure that we’re not the ones carrying the disease.

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