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African swine fever first discovered in German domestic pigs

African swine fever is still rampant in Germany. The virus has now been detected for the first time in around 200 domestic pigs from Brandenburg. Swine fever is harmless to humans, but the highly contagious virus is fatal for pigs.

For the first time in Germany, African swine fever spread to domestic pigs in livestock. Laboratories have detected the virus in an organic farm in the Brandenburg district of Spree-Neisse with around 200 pigs, as well as in a small holder with two animals in the district of Märkisch-Oderland in the same federal state. This was announced by the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture and the Brandenburg Ministry of Health and Consumer Protection on Friday night.

Cases in domestic pigs in Brandenburg

In the same district near the Polish border, the infection of wild boars with the deadly pathogen had already become known. Protection zones and surveillance zones are now to be set up around the two companies. All animals in the two herds would be killed and destroyed.

It is now important that the cause of the path of the virus is found, said State Minister Ursula Nonnemacher (Greens). ‘The fact that the cases were apparently found quickly shows that the animal disease monitoring is working.’

African swine fever is harmless to humans

The virus has also been rampant in Germany for almost a year, but so far only wild boars have been affected. According to the ministry, almost 1270 cases were found in Brandenburg alone. Swine fever is harmless to humans. For pigs, however, the highly contagious virus is usually incurable and fatal. So far there is no vaccination.

Farmers and livestock keepers have long feared that the disease would spread from wild animals to farm pigs. The epidemic has spread to Germany via Eastern Europe. Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and Saxony have therefore built an ASP protective fence around 670 kilometers long to Poland and Eastern Europe. A second fence is being planned. Nonnemacher appealed to the farmers to ‘continue to strictly adhere to the strict biosecurity measures, especially in small farms, in order to prevent further outbreaks in domestic pig keeping’.

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