Study shows risk of ASF entering U.S. has doubled

New research concludes the risk of African swine fever entering the U.S. hog herd has nearly doubled in the last year.

Dr. Andres Perez with the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine helped with the study and tells Brownfield the expansion of the disease in Asia and Eastern Europe increases the chances of ASF reaching the U.S.

“It doesn’t mean that we’re going to have an epidemic, but at the same time we believe there’s a good chance the virus has already reached our borders.”

The study suggests there’s a high probability that African swine fever has already made its way to a major U.S. hub through the smuggling of pork products.

But Perez says to this point, U.S. Customs and Border Protection has prevented the virus from entering the country.

“So for farmers, I think the message is to remain alert, to be familiar with ASF, report any unusual sign of disease you might see on the farm.”

And most importantly, he tells pork producers to maintain a high level of biosecurity.

Perez says if ASF entered the United States, its spread would cause immense economic damage to the pork industry and food production more broadly.

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