African Swine Fever

Over the last two years African Swine Fever has been spreading across continents posing a great threat to the world’s swine population. Having originated in sub-Saharan Africa back in 1907, the disease was isolated to Africa until the 1950s when the disease was reported in Portugal before spreading to nearby European countries.

ASF was then gradually eliminated from many of those countries and outbreak became contained and controlled through the implementation of a culling policy by the 1990s. When ASF reached Asia in 2018, the intense farming practices were hit hard and subsequently an estimated 15% of the entire Asian swine population was slaughtered in an attempt to contain the virus.
Part of the Asfarviridae family, ASF is a double-stranded virus which causes a haemorrhagic fever, loss of appetite, signs of depressions, discolouring or bruising of the skin – often extremities, weight loss, ulcers, and difficulty in breathing. Pigs can experience all, some, or none of those symptoms and the death rate is extremely high.

Spreading to domestic pigs through wild swine species such as Wild Boar, Bush pigs and Warthogs the disease is carried by Ticks. However, African Swine Fever can be transmitted through contact with infected pigs, also consumption of contaminated pork and contact with bodily fluids and faeces. The disease cannot be transmitted to humans.

By the end of 2019 ASF had spread with cases being announced in Belgium, Romania, Bulgaria, Slovakia, Latvia, Greece, Czech Republic, Estonia, Poland, and Ukraine; not to mention many other European and Asian countries.

ASF continues to spread and although slowed down by the slaughter of hundreds of thousands of domestic pigs, the threat the virus has on the world’s swine industry is of grave concern. The international trade of pork products and swine is so high that the possibility of a mass spread over to the United Kingdom and the United States is something that cannot be ignored.

How to Prevent African Swine Fever?
For over 30 years Waste Spectrum Incineration Systems have been working with the agricultural and farming community to increase biosecurity and provide effective and efficient animal carcass & animal by-product waste disposal solutions.
We work around the world, on every continent and have Trusted Partners globally, we can support you in over 100 counties. We pride ourselves in being able to offer guidance and support for your incineration and biosecurity requirements. Our incineration solutions will minimise the risk to your livestock and your business.

Biosecurity is key. Implementing the highest standards of biosecurity on your site will prevent African Swine Fever entering your site. First, we recommend initiating a three-day-clear rule; meaning no one can enter your site if they have been in contact with swine, pig by-products or a pig site in the last three days.

If you are satisfied visitors to your site are safe, it is good practice to provide alternative protective clothing to reduce any potential risk of them bringing contaminants on to your site. Precautions such as a disposable boiler-suit and alternative washable footwear are very effective. It is also recommended to have a disinfectant station for vehicles prior to them entering your site. A holding area where the visitor can spray disinfectant on the wheels and other exposed areas of the vehicle before entering and parking. Once parked, providing an area for them to put on their Person Protective Equipment (PPE). This may include overalls, rubber boots, gloves, and a mask. Providing a changing booth for this is useful, also a hand-wash basin with the appropriate skin-safe chemicals.

As this is a disease commonly spread by wild swine populations, it is advisable to ensure perimeter fencing is in good condition and that repairs to damaged fencing are repaired immediately when spotted. It is also a good idea to ensure tools and equipment as-well as processing or ‘communal’ areas are disinfected after use.

In instances where livestock have died, it is extremely important to ensure that carcasses are disposed of efficiently and in a timely manner. It is widely accepted that incineration is the most suitable for ensuring this. With a Waste Spectrum incinerator, you can safely dispose of waste, diseased or otherwise.

By incinerating your fallen stock, you have full traceability and ensure maximum biosecurity. Preventing a collection vehicle from attending your site will dramatically decrease the risk to your business. With the right Waste Spectrum incinerator, you will be empowered to dispose of waste on-site, with no delay – no need to store carcasses.

At Waste Spectrum we have the widest range of incinerators available on the market and our range is designed to provide solutions to meet the very specific needs of the agricultural community. We will provide full training to end-users on-site where possible to ensure you receive maximum efficiency from the incinerator.

Contact us today to receive expert advice and guidance from our dedicated team, and to find a solution that suits you, your needs and your business.