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By Faizel Patel

Senior Digital Journalist

African swine flu outbreak in SA – these areas are affected

Farmers have been urged to provide some level of biosecurity within pig pens where they keep their animals to ensure safety of their stock

The Eastern Cape Department of Rural Development and Agricultural Reform has warned piggery farmers to protect their animals following the outbreak of swine flu in the province.

The department said it has received reports of four African Swine Fever outbreaks in different areas of the Eastern Cape.

African swine flu

It said the affected areas include the Nelson Mandela Bay metro with reported two outbreaks, Mnquma and Makana with one reported outbreak each.

The department said it will offer assistance to pig farmers.

Government assistance

“We will offer awareness and training to the farmers to keep their pigs enclosed where they cannot be in contact with other pigs that could transmit disease to them. 

“Farmers who own pigs must be able to provide some level of biosecurity within the pens where they keep their animals to ensure safety of their stock.

“African swine fever is a very contagious disease and moves quickly through contact from one pig to the next,” the department said.

The department share information on the dangers of animals infected with African swine fever.

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Eating meat from pigs with swine fever

The virus that causes African swine fever is not zoonotic, meaning it is not transmitted to humans and it does not cause disease to humans.

Veterinary services always advise against eating meat from an animal that died from sickness or unknown causes.

The farmers who keep pigs can still slaughter their pigs for consumption without fear.

Cure or treatment

Most diseases which are caused by a virus do not have treatment but could be prevented by vaccination.

African swine fever also does not have any treatment and unfortunately there is also no vaccine for it in South Africa.

Pigs affected by the disease will most likely be sick and die from the disease.

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Eastern Cape farmers Nelson Mandela Bay Swine flu