A Takeo village’s pigs have been hit with an outbreak of a disease described by a senior Agriculture Ministry official as more economically damaging to Cambodian pig farmers than foot and mouth disease.
The outbreak of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) in Tram Kak district’s Li Nha village has so far infected 36 pigs, 13 of which have died, according to a report filed this week by the office of Agriculture Ministry Deputy Secretary General Dr Sen Sovann, along with the World Organization for Animal Health.
The report estimates 104 animals remain at risk of infection from the outbreak, which it says began on October 20 and was confirmed in a laboratory test last Thursday.
“PRRS really has an economic impact as a disease, as it reduces reproductivity and reduces the number of piglets,” Sovann said.
The last major outbreak of PRRS – which is transmitted via the reproductive organs and suppresses the immune system, making it particularly dangerous to piglets – hit Siem Reap province last year and claimed the lives of more than a thousand pigs.
However, Agriculture Ministry spokesman Lor Raksmey said yesterday that there was little to worry about.
“This disease has been quiet in general,” Raksmey said. “We’ve already taken action in Takeo province . . . We assigned our experts to implement a ban on trafficking pigs in that area.”
PRRS, endemic to much of Southeast Asia, was first identified in Cambodia in 2008 during a Food and Agriculture Organisation screening program.