NPPC applauds USDA for pre-emptive move to protect US pork exports
The USDA has announced its intent to designate Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands as African swine fever “protection zones”. The World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) designation would allow the U.S. to maintain its current animal health status should African swine fever or any other foreign animal disease be detected on the island territories.
National Pork Producers Council president Jen Sorenson says the pre-emptive step would help preserve the continuity of US pork exports. Sorenson says U.S. biosecurity efforts have been significantly bolstered since ASF began spreading in the Asia-Pacific region, and the industry needs to increase those efforts given the proximity of the recent outbreak in the Dominican Republic.
African swine fever was first confirmed in the DR for the first time in 40 years on July 28, 2021, and was found as part of an ongoing cooperative surveillance program between the US and the DR. There are no imports of pork, animal feed, or other pork-production products into the US from the Dominican Republic.