Following the outbreaks of African swine fever (ASF) reported in the North West, Gauteng, Free State and Mpumalanga Provinces, the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development (DALRRD) will be embarking on roadshows and awareness campaigns to meet with farmers/pork producers, affected communities and the public at large.
The Directorate: Food Import and Export Standards: Animal Health Promotion together with the Provincial Departments of Agriculture in collaboration with the Pork Producers Association will be conducting the African swine sever awareness campaigns to educate farmers/pork producers on the prevention, transmission and spread of the disease. These will encompass information on the risk of feeding pigs kitchen waste/garbage, risk of buying from unknown sources, public health risks, symptoms, prevention and control of African swine fever.
ASF does not affect humans and the consumption of pork is safe. However, any meat and products from affected pigs can be a source of infection to other pigs.
Farmers should therefore ensure that, if any swill is fed to pigs, the swill must be pre-cooked for at least an hour.
This will ensure the inactivation of the ASF virus, as well as other diseases of concern. Quick facts about ASF:
· Prevention is better than cure
· There is no vaccine for ASF
· There is no treatment for affected pigs
· It kills almost all infected pigs The disease is transmitted by Contact with infected wild or domestic pigs, Ingestion of contaminated material (e.g., food waste, feed, or garbage), Contaminated fomites (people, vehicles, equipment, shoes), Biological vectors (soft ticks) Farmers/pork producers are requested to be vigilant and to report any sudden illness and deaths of their pigs to the local State Veterinarian.