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Fears for food production as swine fever spreads

Video Credit: Reuters Studio - Duration: 01:19s - Published < > Embed
Fears for food production as swine fever spreads

Fears for food production as swine fever spreads

As Vietnam culls more than 2.5 million pigs to contain the spread of an African swine fever outbreak, the disease may already be affecting a significant proportion of pigs in mainland China.

Emer McCarthy reports.

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Fears for food production as swine fever spreads

Swine fever has already forced the culling of over two and a half million pigs in Vietnam, and now its feared that 30% of all hogs in mainland China could be also be infected.

The outbreak has been ongoing since last August and humans are immune to the disease, but its continuing spread is raising concerns over the food supply for the entire region.

SOUNDBITE (English) PROFESSOR DIRK PFEIFFER, CITY UNIVERSITY OF HONG KONG, SAYING: ''You cannot really remove it with the methodologies that we have at the moment.

And if you cull lots of pigs, again, that's not going to stop the spread.

I've actually said before, this is in my view, for these reasons, the most complex and largest animal disease outbreak that we've ever had on this planet." Earlier this month China's agriculture ministry reported that the country's breeding had declined by a record 24%, a massive loss for the world's largest pork producer.

Also on Thursday (June 21), nearby Laos confirmed its first cases.

But this Shanghai butcher is unfazed, she says that business is good and she can survive, having been in the industry for 20 years.

The disease kills almost all swine it infects.




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