Biggest African swine fever case registered in Lithuania

Source: Xinhua| 2017-07-14 01:20:25|Editor: huaxia
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VILNIUS, July 13 (Xinhua) -- Lithuanian State Food and Veterinary Service (VMVT) confirmed on Thursday the biggest case of African swine fever (ASF) to ever hit the country, following years of the Baltic country's efforts to tackle the spread of the virus.

The positive ASF results were found in a test at a pig farm in Central Lithuania with 23,464 pigs, said VMVT.

This is "the biggest ASF case in Lithuania so far," said VMVT in an announcement.

All the pigs kept by the farm will have to be slaughtered, according to local news agency Elta.

VMVT also took immediate measures to prevent the spread of ASF in areas surrounding the farm.

Vidmantas Paulauskas, the deputy head of VMVT, told Lithuanian national radio LRT that he suspected had a "human error" was behind the ASF case at the farm.

The farm is to incur losses of about four to five million euros (4.55 to 5.69 million U.S. dollars), Algis Baravykas, the head of the Lithuanian pig producers association, told LRT.

It's the second big ASF case in Lithuania in years. In 2014, around 20,000 pigs were slaughtered due to the outbreak of ASF in Danish-owned farms in Eastern Lithuania.

The disease was brought to Lithuania in late 2013 by infected boars from Belarus. Since then, the country saw a rapid spread of ASF. Seven out of 60 Lithuanian municipalities have been in a state of emergency over the disease for more than two years. At the end of last year, the Lithuanian government revoked the state of emergency, claiming the virus has been tackled.

The virus causes no threat to people but is lethal in pigs and boars. Enditem