Deadly swine disease at risk of spreading across globe

May 26, 2011MILAN (Reuters) – African swine fever (ASF), a viral disease harmless to people but lethal to pigs, is likely to spread beyond Russia and the Caucasus region into Europe, the United Nations’ food agency said on Thursday. ASF, for which there is no vaccine, is now established in Georgia, Armenia and southern Russia, with an increasing number of long-distance jump outbreaks in northern areas this year, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said. Long-distance jumps are food-borne, with virus surviving in pig meat products carried by travelers and setting off a new outbreak at the destination where food scraps may be fed to pigs, the FAO said. “African swine fever is fast becoming a global issue,” Juan Lubroth, FAO’s Chief Veterinary Officer, said in a statement. “It now poses an immediate threat to Europe and beyond. Countries need to be on the alert and to strengthen their preparedness and contingency plans,” he said. ASF was introduced into Georgia from southern Africa in 2006 entering through the Black Sea port of Poti, where garbage from a ship was taken to a dump where pigs came to feed, FAO said. Currently, ASF is spreading northwards at the rate of roughly 350 km a year. Usually, ASF has distinct seasonal outbreaks in the summer and autumn. But long-distance jumps have also occurred as the ASF wave travels northwards. The frequency of such jumps is increasing as the originally infected territory enlarges, while the ASF virus strain now spreading is a very aggressive one, the Rome-based FAO said.” –Yahoo News
This entry was posted in Earth Changes, Earth Watch, Food chain unraveling, Mass animal deaths, Pestilence Watch. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Deadly swine disease at risk of spreading across globe

  1. AD says:

    May be this is more important.

    Break of a cycle?


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