ASF infects Antique’s swine production center

The highly contagious African swine fever (ASF) has already infected the Antique Swine Production and Artificial Insemination Center (ASPAIC) in Sibalom town. "The ASPAIC is the source of the piglets being dispersed by the provincial government for the sugar migrant workers and other Antiqueños requesting livelihood projects,' Dr. Marco Rafael Ardamil, chief of the Public Health Division of the Provincial Veterinarian, said in an interview on Tuesday. ASPAIC in Barangay Pangpang used to have 62 hogs but one boar died on July 26, while 61 others, including eight sows, eight gilts, two boars, 19 weanling pigs, and 24 piglets, were depopulated on Aug. 2. Ardamil said he immediately did a necropsy and submitted a blood sample for testing to the Department of Agriculture Regional Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory after the incident on July 26. 'We have to cull the 61 remaining swine at the ASPAIC for they are also suspected to have ASF,' Ardamil added. The center is also the source of the boar semen sold to hog raisers in Antique as part of the economic enterprise of the province. With the ASF spread, the provincial government has temporarily stopped piglet dispersal as part of its livelihood program. Four towns in Antique, including Hamtic, San Jose de Buenavista, Belison, and Sibalom have recorded ASF. 'There are now four towns that have ASF-confirmed cases, of which three have already declared their state of calamity,' Ardamil said. Hamtic, San Jose de Buenavista, and Belison have been placed under a state of calamity as they reported more than PHP57 million in losses due to 6,125 swine mortalities

Source: Philippines News Agency