Amid localised ASF outbreaks, Sarawak continues to export pigs and pork to Brunei, Singapore

Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi

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KUCHING, Jan 21: Not all pigs in Sarawak are infected by African Swine Fever (ASF) as evident by the continued export of pigs and pork to Brunei and Singapore.

In a statement today, Minister of Modernisation of Agriculture and Regional Development Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi assured the public that pork available in the market is safe to consume because the source of the pork is from farms that are free from the AFS virus.

“We are also pleased to inform that the export of pigs and pork to Brunei and Singapore from Pig Farming Area (PFA), Pasir Putih, Simunjan is not affected as it has been recognized as ASF Free Compartment by the Department of Veterinary Services Malaysia and by Animal and Veterinary Service, Singapore,” said Dr Rundi.

Stressing that ASF is not a zoonotic disease because it does not infect humans, he also gave assurance that comprehensive farm surveillance and control activities in Sarawak will be carried out by Sarawak Veterinary Services Department (DVS).

However, Dr Rundi also pointed out that recently, ASF cases were detected in Durin of Sibu and Repok of Sarikei.  

On the local spread of ASF, he said the epidemic had started to spread in Lawas District, Limbang Division around July 2021 due to wild boar hunting activities on the Sarawak – Kalimantan border. 

“The ASF case in Sabah and in the Nunukan and Krayan provinces in North Kalimantan is believed to be the cause of the outbreak to Sarawak, causing some parts to be declared as ASF Control Areas namely Limbang and Miri. 

“To date, ASF cases have been reported in Durin, Sibu and in Repok, Sarikei. As a control measure, 219 pigs were disposed of at a farm in Sarikei.”

As an effort aimed at controlling the spread of the epidemic, Dr Rundi said DVS has announced that no movement of pigs were allowed from one district to another. 

“DVS will introduce a Test and Slaughter Process in line with the Veterinary Public Health Ordinance 1999. The process will require registered pig farms to send pigs to their respective divisional district councils to be tested and marked before slaughter for sale within the area of ​​their respective jurisdiction.”

Dr Rundi called on pig farmers in areas that are still free from the epidemic to be more vigilant and tighten their farms’ biosecurity system. At the same time, he advised pig farmers not to visit other pig farms.

If there are any anomalies or abnormalities in the mortality rate of livestock in livestock farms, farmers are required to report such cases directly to the nearest Divisional Veterinary Services Office or contact them via Whatsapp at 016-284 0918. — DayakDaily