China to mon­i­tor pig trans­port amid spread of swine fever

Global Times US Edition - - CHINA - By Deng Xiaoci

China vows to strengthen the su­per­vi­sion of trans­port­ing live hogs, as 17 prov­inces have been af­fected by the African Swine Fever (ASF) out­break this year, amid grow­ing pub­lic con­cerns that this would lead to a rise in pork prices and un­safe food qual­ity ahead of ma­jor fes­ti­vals.

The Min­istry of Agri­cul­ture, Min­istry of Pub­lic Se­cu­rity and Min­istry of Trans­port said in the doc­u­ment that 17 prov­inces in the coun­try, in­clud­ing ma­jor pig breed­ers in south­ern China, have been af­fected by the ASF, while ac­cus­ing the long dis­tance trans­port of live hogs as the main cause of the cross-re­gional spread of ASF.

The ASF out­breaks in some re­gions were caused by il­le­gal trans­port ac­tiv­i­ties by in­ter­est­driven law­break­ers from virus af­fected re­gions, the doc­u­ment noted.

It said all ve­hi­cles used for trans­port­ing live hogs must un­dergo strict vet­ting at every stage, in­clud­ing checks on li­cense plate reg­is­tra­tion and clean­li­ness and dis­in­fec­tion.

The doc­u­ment came amid Chi­nese ne­ti­zens’ in­creas­ing con­cerns over the sit­u­a­tion, with some say­ing that “the New Year and Chi­nese New Year are just around the cor­ner, and I will have to give up eat­ing pork this year be­cause I do not know if I can trust the qual­ity.”

The agri­cul­tural min­istry said in Au­gust that ASF is a highly con­ta­gious, vi­ral dis­ease that in­fects pigs. It does not af­fect hu­mans or other an­i­mals.

“The live pig sell­ing price is around 4 yuan ($0.57) for every 500 grams, and should cost around 6 yuan to cover for breed­ing. That means for every pig they sell, they are los­ing 200 to 300 yuan,” Zhang Shumin, di­rec­tor of the hus­bandry de­part­ment of the Jilin Acad­emy of Agri­cul­tural Sci­ence, told the Global Times on Thurs­day.

Zhang Yue­jing, an an­a­lyst at Bei­jing-based, a web­site spe­cial­iz­ing in pig in­dus­try news, told the Global Times on Thurs­day that “due to restric­tions on the sup­ply of live pigs in the virus-rid­den re­gions, there is a ma­jor pig pro­duc­tion and mar­ket mis­match in the coun­try.”

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