U.S. Pork Industry Wants Additional ASF Prevention Measures in Place

Continued vigilance by the USDA, Customs and Border Protection, and the U.S. pork industry, means that the U.S. has so far prevented an outbreak of the African Swine Fever Virus. The disease affects pigs and poses no threat to human safety. The National Pork Producers Council and 30 state associations are asking Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue to take additional measures, including restricting imports of organic soy products for animal feed from all countries that have ASF outbreaks. The U.S. pork and feed industries have adopted holding times to allow for the natural degradation of any viruses, to ensure that most imported feed ingredients are safe to use. Research shows that organic soy products can maintain the virus for longer periods, making holding times impractical. Most soy imports into the U.S. are organic. NPPC says it’s confident in the safety of domestic soy products. NPPC and the associations are also asking USDA to further explore the merit of restricting all soy products from ASF-positive countries, to enhance its online system used to permit animal movements in the event of an outbreak, and to expand state animal health laboratory testing capacity.