Effective Foreign Animal Disease Prevention and Preparedness Requires Team Effort

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Farmscape for October 7, 2022

Full Interview 9:06 Listen

The Executive Director of the Swine Health Information Center suggests the continuing spread of African Swine Fever should serve as a reminder to North American pork producers of the need for ongoing attention to biosecurity. The Swine Health information Center’s monthly Global Swine Disease Surveillance Report, released as part of its October enewsletter highlights developments related to African Swine Fever during September in India, Russia, Taiwan, The Philippines, South Korea, Malaysia and Lithuania. Dr. Paul Sundberg, the Executive Director of the Swine Health Information Center and a member of the Swine Innovation Porc Coordinated African Swine Fever Research Working Group, says the continued infection in the Dominican Republic, in southeast Asia, in China and in eastern Europe is an example and a reminder for people here in North America that we remain under that pressure.

Clip-Dr. Paul Sundberg-Swine Health Information Center:
We have in place effective ways to prevent ASF from being introduced into North America. The issue is being able to implement them all the time and being able to be diligent and consistent in application of those prevention efforts. It’s just 24-7 type of activity.
We’ve got to do that all day every day. For producers specifically on the farm, they are the last brick in the wall in this because should a virus, CFS, ASF, Foot and Mouth disease, anything else, any other transboundary disease get through preventative efforts on the borders of our countries, it doesn’t cause an infection in pigs if it doesn’t get to a pig. That means that it’s up to the producers on the farms with their biosecurity protocols to do the best they can do to be a partner in this effort and ensure that doesn’t happen.

Dr. Sundberg suggests ASF prevention and preparedness is not just the responsibility of government but rather it’s a whole state, federal, provincial, producer, industry responsibility to prevent those types of transboundary diseases from getting into North America.

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