HANOI, Vietnam – The agricultural ministry of Vietnam announced on May 27 that 1.7 million pigs, or 5 percent of the country’s herd, has been culled recently due to African Swine Fever (ASF) according to multiple media reports.

ASF has spread to 42 of Vietnam’s 63 provinces, according to the Livestock Production department for the country.

China has already seen significant losses due to the outbreak of African Swine Fever. The largest pork producer in the world is expected to have losses in pork production of 25 to 35 percent and affects an estimated 150 million to 200 million pigs worldwide.

Last week, United States and Canada agreed to modify export certificates to ensure safe trade in the event an outbreak of African Swine Fever occurs in either country.

MEAT+POULTRY attended the US Meat Export Federation (USMEF) Spring Conference in Kansas City, Missouri, where speakers were discussing preparation and awareness for ASF in North America since the virus continues to expand around the world.   

ASF is harmless to humans but deadly to swine. The virus is transmissible via contaminated animal feed, premises, vehicles, equipment and clothing. Warthogs can be a reservoir for the virus and show no clinical signs of infection. Biting flies and ticks can transmit the disease by taking blood meals from an infected animal and passing on the virus to other susceptible animals.

Pigs can become infected through direct contact with infected pigs, and garbage containing unprocessed infected pig meat also are vectors for transmission. There has never been a detected case of ASF in the US. There is also no vaccination for the disease.