WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory has confirmed African swine fever in samples collected from pigs in the Dominican Republic through an existing cooperative surveillance program.
USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has numerous interlocking safeguards in place to prevent African swine fever from entering the United States. Pork and pork products from the Dominican Republic are currently prohibited entry as a result of existing classical swine fever restrictions.
Additionally, the Department of Homeland Security’s Customs and Border Protection is increasing inspections of flights from the Dominican Republic to ensure travelers do not bring prohibited products to the United States. The department will also be ensuring that garbage from these airplanes are properly disposed of to prevent the transmission of the disease.
USDA is committed to assisting the Dominican Republic in dealing with the disease, is offering continued testing support and will consult with them on additional steps or actions to support response and mitigation measures. The department will also offer similar help to Haiti, which borders the Dominican Republic and is at high risk for African swine fever detections.
African swine fever is not a threat to human health, cannot be transmitted from pigs to humans and is not a food safety issue. More information about USDA’s efforts can be found at aphis.usda.gov/aphis/ourfocus/animalhealth/animal-disease-information/swine-disease-information/african-swine-fever/seminar.
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