Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Swine flu continues to spread



Swine flu continues to spread

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
A quarantine officer examine meat at a slaughterhouse in the Vietnamese southernmost province of Ca Mau which has declared the first outbreak of African swine fever in the province on Thursday. Huynh The Anh/Viet Nam News/Asia News Network

Swine flu continues to spread

African swine fever (ASF) has been reported in 48 out of 63 provinces and cities in Vietnam, affecting about two million pigs or 6.5 per cent of the country’s pig population, the country’s agriculture minister said on Friday.

Minister Nguyen Xuan Cuong told the National Assembly that the virus was causing serious damage to the agriculture sector.

On average, agriculture sector generates about 1 quadrillion dong ($42.7 billion) yearly, with pig farming contributing about 90 trillion dong, offering jobs for 2.4 million households, Cuong said.

He said as soon as ASF was reported in China on August 23 last year, Vietnam took preventive measures along the border.

However, the first outbreak of the virus was detected in the northern province of Hung Yen on February 1, he said.

More than 3,000 communes in some 300 districts in 48 provinces and cities nationwide have found the virus in pigs.

“The complicated weather development, small-sized farms and the virus’ characteristics pose a high risk of spreading the virus to other localities and to bigger farms,” Cuong said.

He emphasised the need for communication and prevention and control measures to protect healthy pigs.

The ministry called on farmers to not increase pig numbers at this time due to high disease risk, instead, they should invest in cows, buffaloes and poultry, he said.

Authorities were looking into policies to support affected farmers, producers and traders, he said.

The disease has affected areas up and down the country, from Ha Noi in the north to Kien Giang in the south.

Tightening control

Ho Chi Minh City has tightened control over the transport of livestock and stepped up prevention efforts to prevent the spread of ASF among pigs.

According to Nguyen Phuoc Trung, director of the city’s Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, the city has nearly 4,000 farming households with over 270,000 pigs.

Of these, 247 farming households use leftovers from restaurants and food stores to feed their pigs. This poses a high risk of an ASF outbreak.

All districts must closely monitor farming households who feed their pigs with leftover food, strictly control slaughterhouses with sick pigs, and inspect the origin of pigs, Trung said.

The authorities must inspect pigs being transported to the city, and ensure that inspections will not cause traffic congestion.

Only pork from non-infected areas can enter the city, and quarantine certificates must include the name of the farm and its owner. Vehicles carrying pigs at these places and all slaughterhouses in the city have been disinfected.
Pigs in local farms are also being tested for the disease.

However, many clusters of individual households with pig farms are located near accommodations, making it more difficult to prevent the spread.

Many farmers are still not fully aware of the dangers of ASF and have not applied bio-security measures. And pig culling has not always been carried out safely as staff are not adequately trained and they lack proper equipment and chemicals.

The burial sites are also problematic because much of the land in the south is low lying, allowing water to seep in and spread the disease.

Financial support for affected households has been insufficient, so some families have tried to hide the presence of the disease from local authorities to avoid having their pigs culled. VIET NAM NEWS/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

MOST VIEWED

  • Hong Kong firm done buying Coke Cambodia

    Swire Coca-Cola Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hong Kong-listed Swire Pacific Ltd, on November 25 announced that it had completed the acquisition of The Coca-Cola Co’s bottling business in Cambodia, as part of its ambitions to expand into the Southeast Asian market. Swire Coca-Cola affirmed

  • Cambodia's Bokator now officially in World Heritage List

    UNESCO has officially inscribed Cambodia’s “Kun Lbokator”, commonly known as Bokator, on the World Heritage List, according to Minister of Culture and Fine Arts Phoeurng Sackona in her brief report to Prime Minister Hun Sen on the night of November 29. Her report, which was

  • NagaWorld union leader arrested at airport after Australia trip

    Chhim Sithar, head of the Labour Rights Supported Union of Khmer Employees at NagaWorld integrated casino resort, was arrested on November 26 at Phnom Penh International Airport and placed in pre-trial detention after returning from a 12-day trip to Australia. Phnom Penh Municipal Court Investigating Judge

  • Takeo hand-woven silk items provide local high-quality alternative to imports

    After graduating from university and beginning her career as a civil servant at the the Ministry of Economy and Finance, Khieu Sina found time to establish a business that aligns with her true passion – quality hand-woven Khmer goods. Her product line, known as Banteay Srei,

  • Two senior GDP officials defect to CPP

    Two senior officials of the Grassroots Democratic Party (GDP) have asked to join the Cambodian People’s Party (CPP), after apparently failing to forge a political alliance in the run-up to the 2023 general election. Yang Saing Koma, chairman of the GDP board, and Lek Sothear,

  • 11th Chaktomuk Short Film Festival draws to close

    Cambodia's 11th Chaktomuk Short Film Festival wrapped up successfully on November 28 after a four-day run, with the film “Voice of the Night” awarded top prize for 2022. Sum Sithen, the organiser of the short film festival, told The Post that the number of attendees to the