After a long debate, Japan has decided to allow the vaccination of pigs to prevent the spread of classical swine fever (CSF). The country’s agricultural ministry issued a statement Friday as infections continue to increase throughout Japan.
The ministry urges makers of livestock drugs to boost production of CSF vaccine as the disease waves across eastern Japan, one of its main pork-producing regions, Bloomberg reports.
The ministry had to weigh the decision to allow vaccination of pigs during a time when the country was aiming to expand pork exports.
According to The Mainichi, Japan has enough stock of vaccines that protect against the infectious disease to inoculate about 1 million pigs. However, the government says increased output is necessary because the eradication process may take a long time and areas requiring vaccinations may also expand. CSF broke out one year ago for the first time in 26 years. The virus, first discovered on a farm in central Japan, has been spread to other areas of the country by wildlife, the ministry said.
The disease, also known as hog cholera, affects only pigs and wild boars and has a high fatality rate. It does not affect humans, even if meat from an infected animal is consumed.
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Japan Weighs Implications of Classical Swine Fever Vaccines