Celebrated on 4 February, this Chinese New Year is the Year of the Pig and Australia’s security is on high alert amid the rapid spread of African swine fever (ASF) across international markets.
Australia’s acting head of biosecurity for the Government Marion Healy said although Chinese New Year gifts were brought or sent with good intentions, they regularly intercepted pork products during this time of year.
“Each year we intercept a range of Chinese New Year items, so it is important for people to be aware of our conditions and remind friends and families overseas to not bring or send risk items to Australia,” said Healy.
“ASF is a highly contagious viral disease of domestic and wild pigs that could impact on our pig health and production, market access and economy if it arrived here.”
Australia has recently ramped up its control measures through its borders to stop ASF from entering the country. The Government has increased biosecurity controls across its airports and mail-processing centre after seizing 152 pork products over a two-week period.
“The department wishes prosperity and good health to our Australian-Chinese community and those members of the community who are celebrating the Year of the Pig,” added Healy.