Another Latgale pig farm hit by swine fever

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The Food and Veterinary Service (PVD) confirmed Tuesday that African swine fever (ASF) has hit a large pig pen at a farm in Kraslava district’s Skaista county.

As PVD spokeswoman Anna Joffe told business portal the pen held 196 domestic pigs and is located in the state-of-emergency quarantine zone imposed to check the spread of the outbreak.

The name of the homestead, as well as those where ASF has also been confirmed previously, is not being released to the public at this time.

“Over the weekend PVD inspectors received notice of a farm where the health of the pigs was rapidly deteriorating and they were expiring. Yesterday inspectors finished the burning of the dead animals, closed off the territory and performed disinfection. Today they will begin the humane culling and incineration of the remaining swine herd,” Joffe said.

In addition to the on-site measures, the PVD is also following through on all pork meat and pigs taken from the farm during ASF’s incubation period.

At this point ASF has been confirmed in 45 wild boar, 46 domestic pigs at 24 farming homesteads inside the declared monitoring and quarantine zones.

Agriculture minister Janis Duklavs and PVD chief Maris Balodis have scheduled field visits to Latgale and Vidzeme this week. They will travel to southeast Latgale province Wednesday and northeast Vidzeme Thursday with State Police chief Artis Velšs to see first-hand how the battle against the spread of ASF is proceeding there.

ASF was detected at the beginning of 2014 in Lithuania and Poland, then in June of this year in Latgale near the Belarus border. On July 18 the disease was confirmed to have spread to a pig farm near Valka, close to the Estonian border.

The government-declared state of emergency was approved by Saeima July 3 for the whole territories of Dagda, Kraslava, Zilupe, Aglona, and Cibla districts, as well as numerous parishes in Daugavpils, Rezekne and Ludza districts. A ban on all public events is in force until October 1 in these areas, in addition to the monitoring, quarantine, culling, burning and burying measures.

A state of emergency for monitoring and quarantine measures against ASF has been in effect for the districts of Rēzekne, Ludza, Viļaka, Balvi, Rugāji and Baltinava in eastern Latgale province along the border with Russia, as well as Aloja, Mazsalaca, Ape, Alūksne, Rūjiena, Naukšēni, Burtnieki, Kocēni, Beverēna, Strenči, Priekuļi, Rauna and Smiltene in northern Vidzeme province by Estonia since July 22. In addition, Pelēči and Aizkalne parishes in Preiļi district, and Riebiņi, Rušona and Silajāņi parishes in Riebiņi district were also put under the state of emergency at this time.

The territories now added to the state of emergency essentially cover Latvia's entire land border with Russia and Estonia. The Agriculture Ministry's website displays the following map to illustrate where they hope to contain the outbreak before it threatens the national pig population and potentially impact the world pork industry:

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