Thursday, July 25, 2024
HomeGeneral TourismNew Zealand First calls for more checks for African Swine Fever at...

New Zealand First calls for more checks for African Swine Fever at our borders

New Zealand First spokesperson for Primary Industries, Mark Patterson, has called for awareness to be raised and more stringent biosecurity checks to be put in place for African Swine Fever, a widespread virus that is uncontrolled in most of Asia and a serious issue in Europe.

The virus spreads between pigs and infected pork products. It also can be transmitted in ‘fomites’ – and therefore on boots and transport.

"With the widespread infection in Asia where many travellers and returning workers come from, we need an extra layer of scrutiny," says Mark.

"We’ve seen this before with Velvet Leaf, one of the world’s worst pest plants.

"It was spread around New Zealand because of our risky imports of maize from affected countries which continued after the first alerts. We cannot afford to be complacent.

"Protecting New Zealand from unwanted pests and diseases, including African Swine Fever, is our number one priority," says Mark.

Pork imports are increasing in New Zealand; upwards of 60 per cent of all pork is imported.

The value of the domestic pork industry (including primary and secondary processing including from imported pork) is estimated to be in the region of $750 million.

"We need to make sure our border agencies are sufficiently resourced to ensure this doesn’t become a problem for New Zealand," says Mr Patterson.

"We cannot put our local industry at risk. ASF has no vaccine and no cure," says Mark.

- Advertisment -
Google search engine

Most Popular

Recent Comments