African swine fever outbreaks in pig farms in Poland

African swine fever has again spread to domestic pigs in Poland. Since February 2014 there were 30 cases confirmed and notified in domestic pigs, out of which 7 outbreaks have occurred in 2017.

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The number of infected domestic pigs in Poland since February 2014 is currently 30, with 7 of the outbreaks occurring in 2017. The first domestic pig case was confirmed and notified on 8th June 2017 and the seventh case was notified and confirmed on the 13th June 2017. It has to be stated that all of the cases in domestic pigs occurred in blue zones, next to the red zone also with a recent rapid spread of the virus. The domestic outbreaks confirmed have occurred only in backyard farms and not in farms of commercial production or breeding.

African swine fever was present in Poland for quite some time and various efforts were made to contain the virus and stop its spread. In April 2017 it was reported that the European Commission will provide Poland with additional financial support for the expenditure borne by Poland, covering a maximum total of 50 000 animals.

Poland applied the following measures in order to prevent the further spread of the virus and to contain it:

  • Movement control inside the country
  • Disinfection / Disinfestation
  • Screening
  • Traceability
  • Quarantine
  • Official destruction of animal products
  • Official disposal of carcasses, by-products and waste
  • Stamping out
  • Surveillance within containment and/or protection zone
  • Control of wildlife reservoirs
  • Zoning
  • Vaccination permitted (if a vaccine exists)

Despite the measures applied, Poland has been numerously criticized for their lack of biosecurity because of the continuously increasing numbers of infected wild boars. Since the virus first appeared in Poland in February 2014 a total of 338 cases of infected wild boars were confirmed and notified to date. It has to be however underlined, that in the first half of 2017 already 177 cases of infected wild boars have been confirmed and notified, whereas until the end of 2016 there were 161 cases confirmed in wild boars since 2014. This means that in 2017 in the first half of the year the number of confirmed and notified cases surpassed the number of cases of the last three years combined.

Sources: oie.int – OIE follow up report No. 162, wetgiw.gov.pl, ec.europa.eu, farmer.pl