Swine fever spreads in Japan, 15000 pigs to be culled

Henrietta Strickland
February 9, 2019

According to the Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry and other relevant bodies, the Toyota farm shipped young pigs to Nagano, Gifu, Shiga and Osaka prefectures as well as the western Japan prefecture of Mie since January.

Aichi officials say they were informed on Monday by the Toyota farm that some pigs had been eating less or had been displaying unusual behavior since late January. He instructed officials to take necessary countermeasures and underscore efforts in Gifu Prefecture to contain the virus.

"We must prevent the spread of the virus through tighter cooperation between the government and relevant local authorities", Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said at the meeting, asking ministries including the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries to work closely and respond to requests from the prefectures.

"We will seek to resolve this by sticking to hygiene control standards", said Ozato, who was concerned that using the vaccine would hinder Japan from regaining its World Organization for Animal Health status and being able to expand its pork exports.

China is not the only country now struggling with a swine fever outbreak; the viral epidemic continues to escalate throughout Japan. Swine fever was first detected at a far in the city of Gifu in September, which was the first discovery in Japan since 1992.

The local government in Aichi Prefecture, meanwhile, begun the process of culling around 6,600 pigs at a farm in Toyota City, with local authorities enlisting the help of Ground Self-Defense Force (GSDF) troops.

The national government recommended that the authority of Gifu Prefecture where the first case of infection was found in September use traps to capture wild boars and set up fences to prevent wild boars from spreading the hog cholera virus.

The prefectural authorities defended their initial response, saying there were no signs of swine fever infections, such as a large number of pig deaths, although some miscarriages were observed. In response to the latest rise in the number of visitors from China, the Japanese government increased the number of sniffer dogs at major airports. It said it had found the virus at all the above places except Mie.

These were among other early, government-mandated emergency measures to curtail the spread of the virus from Gifu.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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