Sunday, 23 February

Sekondi-Takoradi: African swine fever breaks out

General News
ASF infected pigs

There is an outbreak of African swine fever (ASF) in the Sekondi-Takoradi metropolis of the Western Region.

The fever has affected pigs brought to the region under the government’s Rearing for Food and Jobs programme.

“Under the Rearing for Food and Jobs, Western Region has been allocated pigs but because of this outbreak of ASF, we wish to appeal for a replacement of sheep and goats to Western Region since it will take a long time to eradicate the disease in the region,” a letter addressed to the Minister of Agriculture by the Western Regional Agriculture Directorate said.

The National Veterinary Laboratory has confirmed the outbreak of the fever.

This is not the first time Swine Fever, which attacks only pigs, has been recorded in the country.

The Central Regional Veterinary Services Department last year placed a ban on the movement of pigs and piggery products in the region.

In July 2017, the Ashanti and Upper East regions recorded an outbreak of the disease.

Facts about African swine fever

-              African swine fever is a severe viral disease affecting domestic and wild pigs.

-              It is responsible for serious production and economic losses

-              It can spread by live or dead pigs, domestic or wild, and pork products

-              Transmission can also occur via contaminated feed and fomites (non-living objects) such as shoes, clothes, vehicles, knives, equipment etc., due to the high environmental resistance of ASF virus.

-              There is no approved vaccine against ASF (unlike classical swine fever (‘Hog Cholera’) which is caused by a different virus)