THAILAND, Bangkok. Thai authorities announced the first official cases of African Swine Fever in Thailand. Pork prices had already been skyrocketing due to supply shortages of the staple food ingredient.
After a sample testing at a slaughterhouse in the Nakhon Pathom province near Bangkok showed positive for the ASF virus, growing concerns that the disease was already decimating the national pig population were confirmed. On January 10, the national veterinary authority of Thailand verified Thailand’s first official case of African Swine Fever. The virus had been detected in the carcass of a miniature pet pig. The owner had brought it in, two more miniature pet pigs out of the same household died shortly after.
Authorities declared a containment zone within a five-kilometer radius of the slaughterhouse and informed the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE). Mass cullings of pigs are under consideration, while pork prices had already increased through pork shortages, leading the Thai government to suspend exports.
ASF has traditionally been present in Africa until the disease was introduced to the Italian island of Sardinia in 1978. The first official case in the EU was reported in 2014, affecting numerous European countries and becoming a worldwide threat to the domestic pig and wild boar population.
Since China reported the first official case in Asia in 2018, the disease has continuously spread throughout Asia and Oceania. As of yet, there is no effective treatment or vaccine against ASF.