August 19, 2019
Philippines sets up crisis team to determine swine fever connection to pig deaths
A rise in pig deaths in the Philippines has prompted the country to set up a crisis management team to determine any possible link to African swine fever, Reuters reported.
According to the Bureau of Animal Industry, the deaths involved pigs from backyard farms, the location of which were not disclosed.
More laboratory tests are required to confirm an outbreak of swine fever, including sending blood samples to foreign laboratories to verify the cause of death, said the Philippines' Agriculture Secretary William Dar on August 19. These tests are expected to conclude in two weeks at the earliest.
The crisis team will implement measures to "manage, contain and control the suspected animal disease or diseases", Dar explained in a media briefing.
In response to a series of swine fever outbreaks happening across the world, the Philippines has suspended the import of pork and pork-based products from more than a dozen countries, including Vietnam, Laos and China.