African swine fever (ASF) is a transboundary animal disease and one of the most severe viral pig diseases. In 2007 it was introduced into the Caucasus and then into Eastern Europe. In the Russian Federation ASF has persisted since 2008 and is currently spreading over Lithuania and Belarus.
The Federation of Veterinarians of Europe (FVE) is concerned that ASFV is spreading across Europe and into Asia and is aware that extensive wild boars and pigs culling lead to severe economic losses, financial consequences for farmers and serious trade restrictions.
For this reason FVE wants to restate that:
- Early detection and response are crucial for the control of ASF (Critical control areas include BIPs and farms, where veterinarians are fully engaged and play a fundamental role);
- Veterinary practioners must encourage farmers to report suspected outbreaks;
- Veterinary Services, as a public good, must be well equipped, resourced with trained staff and have access to sufficient funds (for early diagnosis, effective controls and adequate compensation) in order to achieve effective implementation of prophylaxis measures;
- Swill feeding plays a major role in disease transmission. Vigorous enforcement of the EU-wide ban on swill feeding is essential.
Wednesday February 19, 2014/ Federation of Veterinarians of Europe.