Farm to cull 900 pigs amid outbreak of swine fever

Authorities have ordered the culling of more than 900 pigs after detecting the presence of the deadly African swine fever (ASF) in animals at a licensed farm in the New Territories district.

The Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) said 19 of 30 pigs tested had swine fever and that transportation of pigs from the farm had been suspended immediately.

The culling will start early next week, it said.

“AFCD staff have arranged to inspect the other eight pig farms within 3km of the index farm and will collect samples for ASF testing,” it said in a statement.

“Pork cooked thoroughly is safe for consumption. Members of the public do not need to be concerned.”

In November, Hong Kong also conducted two mass cullings following the detection of ASF.

In the first case, 5,600 pigs from a licensed pig farm in Lau Fau Shan, in the rural Yuen Long area near the mainland China border, were killed.

In the second instance, 1,900 pigs were culled, also from a licensed pig farm in Lau Fau Shan.

It was not immediately clear if the second case was found at the same farm or a different one.

Though often fatal to pigs and with no vaccine available, ASF does not affect humans, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation. — Reuters

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