African Swine Fever: 80 000 pigs culled at two farms in Bulgaria’s Rousse

The culling and burial of close to 80 000 pigs at two industrial pig farms in Bulgaria’s Rousse district where outbreaks of African Swine Fever (ASF) were detected have been completed, Bulgarian National Television said on August 10.

At the industrial pig farms, in the villages of Nikolovo and Brushlen, a specialist company is carrying out disinfection.

The procedure will take about 10 days, after which the farms will additionally have to disinfect their premises and all equipment. This, according to their managers, will last about two to three months.

Meanwhile, a new vehicle disinfection system is being installed at the Danube Bridge border crossing, BNT said.

The hunting season for feathered game opened on August 10, with Bulgaria’s Agriculture Ministry warning hunters to carry out disinfection procedures against ASF.

A week ago, Bulgaria banned hunting in areas where outbreaks of ASF have been confirmed.

Agriculture Minister Dessislava Taneva said on August 9 that 30 outbreaks of ASF had been confirmed in Bulgaria, mainly in the northern part of the country, and including six at industrial pig farms.

Most of the new cases were in wild boar, she said.

Taneva said that even in areas where there are protests and farmers refuse to slaughter their pigs, 75 per cent had already done so.

She said that there undoubtely would be staffing and organisational changes at the Bulgarian Food Safety Agency, but these could not be carried out now “at the height of the African swine fever infection when we need people on the ground”.

The agency has been subject to severe criticism over its handling of the ASF crisis and is under investigation by prosecutors over its public procurement procedures.



The Sofia Globe staff

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