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European Commission fails to offer any proposal on African swine fever control

July 04, 2014, 20:11 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Imports of live pigs and pork from the European Union were banned in January 2014 over an African swine fever outbreak
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© AP Photo/John McConnico

MOSCOW, July 04. /ITAR-TASS/. The European Commission has failed to offer any concrete solutions to tackle the problem of African swine fever, head of Russia’s federal veterinary and phytosanitary control service (Rosselkhoznadzor) Sergei Dankvert told ITAR-TASS on Friday after talks with Bernard Van Goethem, Director, Directorate E, the European Commission’s Health and Consumer Protection DG, in Moscow.

“We are not satisfied with the meeting. Our colleagues presented no official proposals on the regionalization of African swine fever,” he said.

The talks, initiated by the European Commission, had been originally planned to be held in Paris but the venue was later changed.

“We asked to give us official proposals on the regionalization and monitoring by countries, first of all, those that border states where African swine fever outbreaks were registered, including Ukraine,” Dankvert said. “In the long run, such unformulated position will negatively impact European producers.”

Imports of live pigs and pork from the European Union were banned in January 2014 over an African swine fever outbreak in one of the European Union countries. By now, African swine fever has been reported from Lithuania, Latvia and Poland.

African Swine Fever (ASF) is a highly contagious notifiable disease of pigs caused by a virus. The disease may occur in acute, sub-acute or chronic forms. The acute form causes severe disease from which the majority of affected pigs die. African Swine Fever can be spread through direct contact with infected pigs, faeces or body fluids; indirect contact via fomites such as equipment, vehicles or people who work with pigs between pig farms with ineffective biosecurity; pigs eating infected pig meat or meat products; biological vectors - ticks of the species Ornithodoros. There is no vaccine against African Swine Fever, which can be stopped from spreading only through culling infected animals. The first African Swine Fever outbreak was registered in South Africa in 1903.

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