The Ministry of Agriculture & Forests (MoAF) would like to notify the general public that the African Swine Fever (ASF) outbreak has been confirmed in three pig farms in Gelephu geog under Sarpang Dzongkhag. ASF is a highly contagious viral disease of domestic and wild pigs with a mortality rate of up to 100%. The disease is spread through contacts between pigs (domestic or wild), contaminated pig products, feeding pigs with kitchen wastes contaminated with pork products, through movement of contaminated personnel and farm equipment (fomites). As of now, there is no vaccine and effective treatment available for ASF. Although ASF does not affect human health, it can cause catastrophic socio-economic consequences for the pig farming sector.
Despite repeated notifications issued by the Ministry, we have encountered individuals illegally importing live pigs, pork and pork products. There are reports of people illegally bringing in pork and pork products from across the border. The Ministry would like to reiterate the reinforcement of containment measures including the ban on movement and sale of pig and pig products from the affected area that are currently being put in place by the local authorities.
Further, the pig farmers within the country are urged to heighten biosecurity in their farms; ensure kitchen wastes are properly cooked before feeding to the pigs and prevent domestic pigs from coming into contact with wild pigs. The Livestock legislation mandates farmers and the general public to immediately report any suspicious deaths in domestic or wild pigs to the nearest livestock centres or BAFRA office or through toll-free numbers 1244 (DoL) or 1555 (BAFRA). Failing to promptly report any suspicious deaths to the nearest livestock centres or BAFRA office shall result in penalties as per the Livestock Rules and Regulations 2017.
Livestock and BAFRA officials shall ensure that the above measures are strictly adhered to, by the relevant stakeholders. Any person found not adhering to this notification shall be firmly dealt in accordance with the Livestock Act of Bhutan 2001.
Issued for information and strict compliance.