China finds African Swine fever in piglets in Chongqing

BEIJING (Reuters) - China’s agriculture ministry confirmed on Friday African Swine Fever in piglets illegally transported to the southwestern city of Chongqing, the first reported outbreak since July 25.

The Chongqing Animal Disease Prevention and Control Center seized 70 piglets of which two were dead and 14 were ill, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs said in a statement.

As part of the disease management and emergency response all the piglets were culled and the relevant places, roads and transport vehicles were disinfected, the ministry said.

China, the world’s top pork consumer, is targeting a pork self-sufficiency rate of 95% as it rebuilds its huge pig herd after the African Swine Fever epidemic.

The disease is not dangerous to humans but it is fatal to pigs and a big outbreak in China, elsewhere in Asia and Europe has led to abrupt changes in global pork trade flows.

China and other Asian nations have banned German pork imports due to an outbreak of the disease in Germany, causing Chinese pork rib prices to jump.

Reporting by Shivani Singh; Editing by Toby Chopra and Susan Fenton