Update: Reports of ASF in Russia and other parts of Eastern Europe

African swine fever (ASF) is making its way into Eastern Europe.

Russian authorities have reported a new ASF outbreak in the region of Primorsk, next to the border with China, Reuters reported.

Last week, other sources reported an outbreak in Volgograd Oblast, in a backyard farm of 14 pigs — four of which died due to the contagious fever, according to the Russian veterinary authority.

July also had some reports of ASF outbreaks; some in backyard farms, and one at an industrial farm in Belgorod Oblast.

Outbreaks in industrial farms aren’t as common as in backyard farms due to rigid biosecurity plans and other safety measures implemented by the farms, but the few outbreaks that sneaked through could be the result of small farms, located next to the industrial farms, not taking enough precautions to prevent the spread of disease.

As reported by the General Director of the Russian Union of Pork Producers, Yuri Kovalev, half of Russian pork producers have been affected by ASF outbreaks in the last 10 years.

Around 54 ASF outbreaks are expected to hit the Russian pork industry this year. This would be the lowest figure in the past decade. The country had 56 outbreaks in 2018, and 188 in 2017.

Last month, 30 outbreaks of the fever were reported in other countries of Eastern Europe. In Bulgaria, more than 130,000 pigs have been culled as preventive measure. Romania, Slovakia, Ukraine, and Hungary have seen cases of the fever as well, some in wild boars.

Meanwhile in Asia

A year has passed since the first reports of ASF in China, but last week, new cases of the fever were detected in some parts of the country, which is the world’s biggest pork producer.

The reports come from a small backyard herd of 32 pigs in the province of Hubei.

More than 149 outbreaks have been reported, and 1.2 million pigs have been culled since August 2018.

Chinese pork production is expected to decline by 25% this year, and another 15% in 2020, according to some experts.

Last month, three more outbreaks were reported in the province of Savannakhet, Laos. The first reports of the fever date back to June of this year.

As of last week, there haven’t been new reports of outbreaks in Vietnam, but the fever has killed more than 10% of the pig population and affected 61 cities and provinces since February of this year.

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