The incineration of ASF-infected pig carcasses proposed by the Sibu Municipal Council (SMC) in Sarawak, Malaysia is too costly and impractical, said Dato Sri Stephen Rundi Utom, minister in charge of agriculture in the state.
“The Sarawak Veterinary Services Department will continue to use existing procedures in culling pigs to control the spread of ASF,” he said, adding that the agency recently culled more than 760 pigs from two infected farms in Sibu.
The current processes include using CO2, an electric rod, or a captive bolt gun to kill the pigs, followed by burial.
SOP on abattoirs
Dr Rundi also said the SMC abattoirs can resume operations only after sanitation, decontamination, and downtime of the premises are completed.
He explained that follows the SOP of the Veterinary Standing Directive issued by the Department of Veterinary Services Malaysia in Putrajaya, which requires infected premises to be left empty for 40 days after disposal and sanitation activities before bringing in new animals.
“The ASF virus can be active in the environment for long periods. I urge individuals affected by this closure order to be patient for a while. Pork is available from Kuching and is guaranteed to be sufficient to meet local demand,” said Dr Rundi.
“This activity is necessary to ensure that the pig industry in Sarawak will continue to develop and grow if this ASF disease can be controlled and eradicated,” he added.
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