The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries has launched a Lumpy Skin Disease (LSD) vaccination campaign for cattle as the disease has spread to several provinces and infected more than 30,000 animals.

Agriculture minister Veng Sakhon said on August 29 that the disease has spread rapidly from the provinces bordering Thailand to the central lowlands of Cambodia, especially affecting cattle in Tbong Khmum, Kampong Cham and Prey Veng.

To date, the disease has infected more than 30,000 animals, especially calves.

“This disease ... has killed some cows, which is of great concern to the ministry,” said Sakhon.

Sakhon said the ministry has 20,000 doses in hand, ordered from Vietnam. Another 40,000 doses ordered from South Africa are coming later this week.

“These vaccines allowed the ministry to start a campaign to prevent LSD in cattle and buffalo, which launched on August 28 in Tbong Khmum province. Today we have continued to vaccinate against LSD in [neighbouring] Kampong Cham province,” he said.

LSD is a disease affecting cattle that can cause scabies and ulcers. It can cause bulls to become impotent and pregnant cows to miscarry. The virus can be transmitted from one animal to another through direct contact or indirectly from one animal to another through infectious agents.

The disease has a rate of illness between 5 and 45 per cent, but a mortality rate of less than 10 per cent.

Tan Phannara, in charge of the general directorate of animal health and production, told The Post on August 29 that Cambodia would use the vaccines to cut off transmission to local people’s cattle and buffaloes.

“With this vaccination campaign, we are not charging anyone any costs for vaccines. Because we only received 20,000 doses of the vaccines, we will be dividing them among provinces depending on the actual number of infections,” he said.

The Cambodia Coalition of Farmer Community’s president Theng Saroeun said that providing vaccinations to people’s livestock at this time was very important because the vaccination campaign can reduce death and illness and relieve the burdens of Cambodian farmers and reduce people’s worries about raising their cattle and buffalo.

“I think this is the duty of the authorities to respond to solve the problems that the people are facing. And it is a good thing that shows the service and the responsibility of the authorities to solve people’s problems in their respective fields,” he said.

Saroeun said he expects the government to find enough of this vaccine to provide it to all people with cattle and buffalo soon, especially for farmers who raise cattle and buffalo for personal use.