Outbreaks of African swine fever lead to both direct and indirect economic consequences. Although indirect economic impacts are generally expected to be very significant they are poorly understood, which increases the uncertainty surrounding the economic impact of regulatory measures for policy makers. On behalf of the Swiss Federal food safety and veterinary office, we conducted a semi-quantitative study to assess the indirect economic impact of an outbreak of ASF in wild boar or domestic pigs in Switzerland.
We first defined several scenarios for ASF outbreaks in Switzerland. We then reviewed the Swiss policy measures that will be taken in case of such outbreaks and interviewed Swiss stakeholders about how they would be affected by the implementation of these measures. Data collection was complemented by the collection of statistical agricultural data.
Our results showed that significant indirect economic impacts are to be expected for actors of pig value chain. In particular control measures related to achieving a strict separation between domestic pigs and wild boar as well as measures related to slaughter and transport logistics have the potential to cause major economic consequences. These findings can be used to strengthen preparedness measures in the pig sector aiming to reduce the economic impact of an outbreak of ASF. Part of our work was also published here.
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