USDA awards $1.7m to fight African Swine Fever

By Aidan Fortune contact

- Last updated on GMT

USDA awards $1.7m to fight African Swine Fever

Related tags: Pork, African swine fever

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has allocated a $1.7m grant to the Swine Health Information Center (SHIC) to aid dialogue between the US and Asia to help tackle African Swine Fever (ASF).

The grant, awarded through USDA’s Foreign Animal Service, aims to help build strategic partnerships, while increasing trade of US pork to the region. The work will include swine health field projects, including collection and analysis of disease samples, which are valuable data for all participants and US pork producers.

“Pork production is a global business and working with industry representatives from Vietnam on these projects will be mutually beneficial for all,”​ said SHIC executive director Paul Sundberg. “The Swine Health Information Center looks forward to fulfilling the responsibilities of this grant from USDA and in the process deliver value to US producers for the benefit of national herd health.”

The initiative is also being supported by the National Pork Producers Council (NPPC).

“NPPC, in partnership with SHIC, National Pork Board (NPB), American Association of Swine Veterinarians (AASV), and USDA, is committed to reducing the risk of the U.S. swine herd contracting foreign animal diseases, including ASF. With ASF spreading throughout Asia, this project will represent an important tool to further open both communication and markets between our regions,”​ said NPPC president David Herring.

Under the first phase of the project, the groups will identify and meet with key stakeholders in Vietnam. In phase two, the groups will train the Vietnamese veterinary workforce on ASF prevention and control, helping to build local veterinary capacity. Concurrently in the final phase, ASF-related field projects will be implemented, including those helping to inform the U.S. pork industry about effective ASF preparedness and response.

It is hoped the projects will help in identifying pathways for viral entry on farms; validating use of swine oral fluids to confirm farm or region positive or negative status and exploring the potential to isolate the virus on one area of a farm to enable other areas to provide pigs free of ASF contamination. It also hopes to improve validating cleaning and disinfecting procedures so farms may be repopulated as soon as it is safe and assessing cross-border risks and risk management of transboundary swine diseases.

Global Meat News will be hosting a webinar on African Swine Fever and its impact on the international meat market on 29 October. To get involved, contact Aline Henderson on our commercial team aline.henderson@wrbm.com​

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