May 27, 2020
India's Assam state ends suspension of pork sale in ASF-hit districts
The government of India's Assam state has ended a ban on the sale and consumption of pork in districts hit by African swine fever, but with certain conditions, Hindustan Times reported on May 26.
ASF has led to the death of close to 16,000 pigs since April in 10 of Assam's 33 districts. In response to the rising pig deaths, the local government stopped the sale of pork in affected districts on April 25.
"After consultations with veterinary experts and veterinary department officials, we have decided on certain relaxations in sale and consumption of pork and pork products. I am sure this will provide relief to pig farmers and piggery owners," agriculture minister Atul Bora said during a press conference.
The sale and consumption of pork remain banned within outbreak epicentres and infected and surveillance zones. Additionally, inter-district and inter-state sale, purchase and transfer of pigs, pork and pork products are not permitted, Bora said.
Manoj Kumar Basumatary, president of North East Progressive Pig Farmers Association (NEPPFA), welcomed the government's latest move as "it will provide some relief to pig farmers."
"The government should also consider giving financial assistance or fodder to farmers in affected districts and there should be more testing of samples to ensure that the disease doesn't spread further," he added.
- Hindustan Times