FAO warns about African swine fever danger in the Americas

(Prensa Latina) The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) on Monday warned all nations about recent detection of the first case of African swine fever (ASF) in the Americas.

A note issued by the FAO regional office called for increased prevention measures following ASF cases in domestic pigs in the Dominican Republic on July 28.

FAO cleared up that ASF does not pose a risk to human health through direct contact with infected animals, but it can cause serious economic damage.

FAO added that ASF has been found in all continents and is currently affecting over 50 countries in Africa, Europe, Asia and the Pacific, damaging their food safety and biodiversity.

‘With its high rate of animal mortality, the ASF spread and endemic persistence could seriously affect pig production and also national and international trade,’ the note stated.

In this regard, FAO called on countries to swiftly activate and review their ASF emergency response plans in order to prevent or quickly control any outbreak. There is a great risk that ASD spreads to the rest of Latin America and the Caribbean.

For this reason, FAO called for strengthening border controls to prevent the movement of pigs and pork products and biosecurity measures in pig farms, as well as increasing the control of personal belongings of Dominican travelers.

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