The state of Brandenburg in eastern Germany confirmed on Tuesday that 5 more wild boars were found positive for African swine fever (ASF). While countries around the world are closing their borders on German pork, talks are ongoing at the highest level to implement a regionalization approach in China.
This means that the reported finding last week on Thursday was not an isolated incident. The 5 animals were found in the Neuzelle community in the Oder-Spree district. 4 animals were found dead, a fifth (sick) animal was shot, according to the press release of the state of Brandenburg.
Official ASF confirmation follows
The discovery of the African swine fever virus was confirmed by the Berlin-Brandenburg state laboratory. Samples are sent to the German national reference laboratory at the Friedrich Loeffler Institute (FLI), which has to formally confirm the outbreaks.
Neuzelle is 4 km from the border with Poland. The place is 7.5 km north of where the first carcass was found last week in the community of SchenkendÃ¶bern. The find has been tentatively added to the map below; if more details are added, this will be updated.
A living wild boar in Germany that does not have ASF. – Photo: Shutterstock
More details about the first carcass
In response to questions from Pig Progress, the FLI said that the original carcass of a female wild boar in SchenkendÃ¶bern was dead 2-4 weeks before it was found due to weather conditions and circumstances.
The new findings are most likely the result of new measures taken by the state of Brandenburg. In a press release it was said that all farmers and hunters had been informed of the situation and that the core zone within a radius of at least 3 km from where the infected wild boar carcass was found was completely fenced in with an electric fence on Saturday. The search was then intensified. Outside this zone, wild boar hunting is significantly intensified.
The new findings are most likely the result of new measures taken by the state of Brandenburg. In a press release it was said that all farmers and hunters had been informed of the situation and that the core zone within a radius of at least 3 km from where the infected wild boar carcass was found was completely fenced in with an electric fence on Saturday. The search was then intensified. Outside this zone, the hunt for wild boar is significantly intensified.
Discussions about regionalization
The Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) is said to have started talks with its Chinese counterparts in order to get the import ban in China off the table. According to the German pig title SUS, the decisive factor for these experiments is the recognition of regionalization, which would mean that only pork from the state of Brandenburg would be included in the import ban. The ministry also pointed out that German pig farms generally have a high bio-security status and that the risk of infection is therefore low.
In the first half of 2020, Germany exported around 400,000 tons of pork to China.
In addition to China, South Korea, Japan, the Philippines, Brazil, Mexico and Argentina have also announced that they will close their borders for German pork. Japan even went so far as to block all German pork produced after August 2nd.
Measures in the inner zone of infection
According to European regulations, an inner zone is set up around the sites where a lockdown takes place; and an outer ring zone with increased surveillance. The local newspaper MOZ quoted Brandenburg’s Agriculture Minister Axel Vogel as saying that there are 182 farms within the inner exclusion zone. These farms with a total of more than 33,000 hectares of arable land are now neither allowed to sow nor harvest.
Vogel added that around 100,000 wild boars were shot in Brandenburg alone in the 2019-2020 hunting season. That was a record since 1990.
In addition, the state of Brandenburg has announced a reward of up to 100-150 euros for every dead wild boar found. Consumer Protection Minister Ursula Nonnemacher said: â€œDead wild boars are important indicator animals to determine the extent of the actual infection process. Only if we quickly know how far infected animals have spread the virus can we contain and eliminate it quickly. “