African swine fever outbreak detected at two pig farms in Kerian, Perak

KUALA LUMPUR: The Department of Veterinary Services (DVS) has confirmed an outbreak of African Swine Fever (ASF) at two commercial pig farms in Kerian district, Perak on Sept 17 and18.

In a statement, it said the matter was confirmed through a Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test by the Veterinary Research Institute (VRI) and quarantine measures and prevention of the spread of ASF disease have been implemented.

“The infected farms have been sealed and prohibited from transporting any pigs and movement of vehicles, in addition to surveillance, clinical inspections and sampling at commercial pig farms in the infected areas being carried out.

“The operations room at the Perak DVS and Kerian district veterinary office have been activated with the involvement of the Kerian district office.

“The conditions for moving pigs and pork products from Perak to the rest of Peninsular Malaysia have also been tightened.

“In addition, the immediate culling (and disposal) of the remaining pig population at the ASF-infected farms and the tracking of pig transportation vehicles involved in the infected farms are also being implemented,” it said.

According to the DVS, so far, the outbreak is under control and the infection has only occurred in the Kerian district, while the public are advised not to panic as the ASF disease is not zoonotic (not contagious to humans).

“All parties are requested to report to the DVS in case of unusual deaths and clinical signs of suspected infectious disease among livestock in the commercial farms and abattoirs.

“Farmers are also advised not to send their pigs to the abattoirs if there are clinical signs of suspected disease at their farms.

“Pig transportation vehicles must go through a thorough disinfection process before and after leaving the slaughterhouse area.

“Please report immediately to the district veterinary services office (PPVD) and state veterinary services office or directly to the crisis management room hotline of the Putrajaya Veterinary Services Department at 03-8870 2041,” it added.

In addition, all commercial pig farms are urged to strengthen their biosecurity practices and facilities at their respective premises by ensuring complete perimeter fences, not to share the pig transportation vehicles with other farms, disinfection of clothing and farm equipment, and that disinfectants must be used according to the specifications on the label.

Farmers and pig farm workers are advised not to visit other pig farms and the public are advised not to buy live pigs directly from farms or pig transportation vehicles to reduce the risk of ASF transmission. – Bernama