Vietnam culls 1.7 million pigs as more provinces detect African swine fever

By Phan Anh   May 27, 2019 | 03:36 pm GMT+7
Vietnam culls 1.7 million pigs as more provinces detect African swine fever
Pigs are seen inside their cage at a farm in northern Vietnam. Photo by Reuters/Kham
Soc Trang and Kien Giang in the Mekong Delta are the two latest localities where African swine fever has been detected in Vietnam.

The presence of disease in Kien Giang Province was confirmed last Friday when provincial authorities killed 33 infected pigs in Tan Hiep District.

Soc Trang Province killed 55 pigs in My Xuyen District on Monday, local media reported, citing the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.

Vietnam has killed 500,000 infected pigs over the past two weeks, taking the total culled so far to 1.7 million, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development said Monday.

After it hit Vietnam in February, African swine fever has quickly spread across the northern, central and southern regions. At least 42 cities and provinces, of the country's 63, have been infected by the disease, according to the ministry’s Livestock Production Department.

Vietnam has the world’s seventh biggest pig herd and is the sixth largest pork producer, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

Some 70 percent of meat products in Vietnam are from pigs, with over 10,000 farms and 2.5 million households raising the animal for food.

Vietnam said earlier this month it is considering mobilizing its military and police forces to help combat the outbreak.

There is no cure for African swine fever though humans are not affected by it.

Twenty countries and territories have reported outbreaks since 2017 and over 2.5 million pigs have been killed, according to the World Organization for Animal Health. Vietnam is the third country in Asia to be hit after China and Mongolia.

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