Tuesday , October 4 2022

New hit in China, such as African swine fever found in wild boar


China's efforts to eradicate the spread of African swine fever were met with a new blow Friday when the Department of Agriculture confirmed that it had found the first case in a wild boar by plunging a three-month crisis for the world pork producer.

The country also confirmed the first outbreak in southwestern Sichuan province, the dominant swine area in the country, increasing the likelihood of a large impact on the supply of pork in the coming months.

The disease was found dead on a wild boar in Bastian, in Jilting Province, northeastern China, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs.

"How do you control wild boar?" Said Yah Guiding, an analyst at China-America Commodity Data Analytics, "the new case means it will be even more difficult to control African swine fever.

China has banned the transportation of live pigs and products from African swine fever and adjoining provinces to control the spread of highly contagious disease and the ban on catering for kitchen waste in pigs.

But the virus continued to spread despite government efforts, with more than 60 outbreaks in 18 provinces across the country since the beginning of August.

China's large boar population, which can host the disease without symptoms, is estimated to total 33.5 million, according to Reuters calculations based on data from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Local authorities in Jilting have inspected nearby areas frequented by wild boars and have completely sterilized all pig farms in the region, the ministry said in a statement.

Analysts said the discovery of wild boar suggested that the virus could have been imported into China from animals from other countries.

China has accused catering kitchen waste to pigs for the spread of the disease.

The highly contagious disease was also discovered in a 40-pig farm in Yibin, southeast of Sichuan.

"With the new case in Sichuan, all major pig-breeding provinces have now fallen, the situation is very serious," Yu said.

China slaughters about 700 million pigs a year. Sichuan produced nearly 66 million in 2017, according to official data, more than any other province.

Sichuan is also the province with the highest per capita consumption of pork in China at 36kg, according to National Statistics Office.

Provincial authorities in Sichuan issued a ban last week to import all live pigs and products from other regions in order to keep the disease.

Yibin, however, is located near the Sichuan border with Chongqing and Guizhou province, both of which have already reported hotspots.

Pig prices in Cheng, capital of Sichuan, are now the highest in the country, thanks to strong local demand and rising after disease infection near the provinces.

Prices fell 0.2 yuan on Friday from a day earlier to 17.7 yuan ($ 2.55) per kilo, according to data collected by China-America Commodity Analytics.

The discovery of African swine fever in Sichuan comes less than three months ahead of the lunar New Year celebrations in early February, which mark the peak demand for pork.

There is no cure and no vaccine for the disease, and the virus can survive for weeks in pork and animal feed.


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