Japan Confirms Outbreak of Classical Swine Fever at Gunma Pig Farm

AgWeb ( Japan has since tightened quarantine operations at airports and seaports, especially from those traveling from areas infected with the disease. )

An outbreak of classical swine fever (CSF) has been confirmed at a pig farm in the city of Takasaki, Gunma Prefecture in Japan. This is the first outbreak of this highly contagious disease in commercial hogs since March 2020.

According to the Japan Times, the Gunma Prefectural Government will slaughter all of the roughly 5,400 pigs at the farm in accordance with the law.

CSF vaccinations in this prefecture started for commercial pigs in October 2019, following the discovery of an infected wild boar. However, the animals found with the disease at the affected farm, all piglets, had yet to be vaccinated, the article said.

Earlier this month, piglets at the farm started to die after suffering from diarrhea. The number of deaths had reached about 200, the Japan Times reports. The prefecture tested the remaining pigs at the farm following a report from its operator on Sept. 25. CSF was confirmed in three piglets who were each about 70 days old.

Piglets are typically vaccinated around the time the antibodies they received from their mothers disappear. The three piglets were covered by the vaccination program, but had yet to be vaccinated as they were showing symptoms of diarrhea, according to the Japan Times.

The prefecture and the central government said they will jointly investigate the infection route. A wild boar infected with CSF has been found around 5 kilometers from the Takasaki farm, the Japan Times reports.

On Sept. 3, Japan officially lost its disease-free status for CSF. CSF, 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. Wild boars are thought to be the major cause of disease spread in Japan. 

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