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There have been significant recent developments in the spread of African swine fever (ASF) in the world. Developments in the distant countries of Germany and the Dominican Republic are especially grabbing headlines, with domestic pigs becoming infected in Germany and the first cases in the western hemisphere in nearly 40 years appearing in the Dominican Republic. ASF continues to spread in domestic pigs in countries such as in China, the Philippines, Romania, Poland and Serbia (Cadogan, 1 Aug 2021; Fastmarkets, 2021; FAO EMPRES, 2021). The spread of the virus is worse among wild boar in countries such as Germany, Hungary, Poland, Romania, and Slovakia (Cadogan, 1 Aug 2021). We turn our attention here to the evolving situations in Germany and the Dominican Republic. While the developments in the two countries are unrelated to each other, they highlight the scope and challenges associated with controlling the disease.
The USDA published a preprint study on 29July suggesting that 40 % of white-tailed deer assessed in four U.S. states have been exposed to SARS-CoV-2 based on antibody testing (Chandler et al., 2021).These findings raise concerns that white-tailed deer could be a wildlife reservoir for SARS-CoV-2 that could result in future outbreaks in humans. The findings represent the first detection of widespread exposure to the virus in wildlife, following case studies of infected escape and wild mink in Utah in 2020(Mallapaty, 2021; Shriner, 2021; ProMed, 2020).
Who are the people behind SAFOSO? What inspires them and how do they contribute to solving animal health challenges? Manon Schuppers shares her story.
SAFOSO in collaboration with South African Pork Producers' Organisation assessed the current African Swine Fever (ASF) pig compartment system in South Africa based on the perception of farm managers and veterinarians of the risk of ASF introduction. Although the overall management system appears to be robust, certain gaps were identified, and SAFOSO prepared associated recommendations to close those gaps.