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African Swine Fever Detected in Pig Slaughterhouse

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African Swine Fever Detected in Pig Slaughterhouse

Officials from the Department of Livestock Development have detected African swine fever in a swab sample collected at a slaughterhouse in Nakhon Pathom Province.

At a press conference on Tuesday, Director General of the Department of Livestock Development, Soravis Thaneto, announced the first detection of African swine fever in Thailand.

According to the Bangkok Post, Thai authorities launched a probe over the weekend after allegations of a cover-up and growing speculation the disease was already decimating Thai pig herds.

There was only one positive sample out of 309 collected, including blood samples from pigs at 10 farms and surface samples from two slaughterhouses in swine-raising provinces, the director-general said.

“We found one sample that tested positive for African swine fever,” Mr Sorravis told a news conference on Tuesday, where he vowed to trace the source of the disease.

Read: African Swine Fever Blamed for Soaring Pork Prices

Despite years of denial, Thai authorities have now confirmed that African swine fever exists in Thailand. A deadly disease has been sweeping through Europe and Asia and killing hundreds of millions of pigs.

Earlier this month, Kasetsart University’s laboratory confirmed finding the disease in a dead pet pig, the first report of its kind in Thailand.

In addition to declaring a disease outbreak zone within a five-kilometre radius of the sample’s location, authorities will limit pig movements, consider culling animals suspected to be infected, and compensate affected farms, Mr Sorravis said.

Moreover, the government will notify the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) of the official discovery of the disease, he said.

To prevent African swine fever and other viral pig diseases, the cabinet approved Tuesday compensation for smallholder farms in 56 provinces where pigs were culled last year.

A government spokesman said that nearly 5,000 farmers are still owed compensation for the more than 159,000 pigs culled between March and October last year.

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