Source: DayakDaily, Sarawak
KUCHING, March 29: The Sibu Municipal Council (SMC) abattoir will reopen tomorrow (March 30).
In a statement today, Modernisation of Agriculture and Regional Development Minister Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi Utom said on March 9, African Swine Fever (ASF) was detected at the SMC abattoir and pork market.
The ASF contaminated premises were sealed for a thorough cleaning and sanitisation operation beginning March 9. “Following the last inspection on March 25, 2022, the Department of Veterinary Services Sarawak (DVSS) is allowing for reopening of Sibu abattoir on March 30, 2022, subjected to strict compliance with Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) given,” said Dr Rundi.
He said to prevent the spread of ASF, control and surveillance at the source are of utmost importance. “All pigs delivered to slaughterhouses must come from registered pig farms. Monitoring and inspection should be conducted frequently at all checkpoints during transportation as well as in and out of the abattoir,” said Dr Rundi.
In order to ensure effective implementation of SOPs in the abattoir, SMC and butchers shall be responsible for strictly enforcing the SOPs.
Dr Rundi noted that ASF is a severe, highly contagious, viral disease affecting pigs, but it does not infect humans and poses no food safety risk. According to World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), ASF is not a threat to human health, said Dr Rundi. Due to the contagiousness of the disease in all breeds of pigs and that no vaccine or treatment has been developed for the virus, DVSS reminded all that prevention and practising strict farm bio-security are the best ways to prevent the spread of ASF and the risk of intrusion of the disease.
Dr Rundi said among others, local pig farmers are required to maintain proper bio-security including strictly conducting cleaning and disinfection of the farm, controlling the access of vehicles and personnel to farms, and strengthening boundary fencing.