Print Friendly, PDF & Email

African swine fever

Topics Covered: Issues related to health.

African swine fever:


Small farms in Asia are the worst hit by the African Swine Fever outbreak. Why?

  1. Pig farms remain dominantly an affair of small-scale farmers.
  2. In many countries, including India, 70 per cent of the pig farms are owned by small-scale farmers.
  3. In China, almost 98 per cent of the total pork production is by small-scale farmers who have fewer than 100 pigs each.


Impact in India:

  • African swine fever, a century-old disease that infects pigs and wild boars with a near 100 per cent fatality rate, has claimed a third of the world’s pigs since 2018.
  • Its latest victim is India, where cases have been reported since May 2020 but have exploded in the past couple of months.
  • Estimates show that ASF has caused a 50 per cent shortage in northeastern states’ pork production.


About African Swine Fever (ASF):

  • ASF is a highly contagious and fatal animal disease that infects domestic and wild pigs, typically resulting in an acute form of hemorrhagic fever.
  • It was first detected in Africa in the 1920s.
  • The mortality is close to 100 per cent, and since the fever has no cure, the only way to stop it spreading is by culling the animals.
  • As of now, there is no approved vaccine, which is also a reason why animals are culled to prevent the spread of infection.


Insta Curious: 

Do you know that ASF is a disease listed in the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) Terrestrial Animal Health Code? Read this

Do you know that WTO Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures “recognises the OIE as the international standard setting organisation for animal health and zoonotic diseases?



Prelims Link:

  1. Can swine fever affect humans?
  2. Is it a viral disease?
  3. Where was it first discovered?
  4. Which countries have been affected by this in 2020?
  5. Is there any vaccine available against this?

Mains Link:

Write a note African Swine Fever, symptoms and its spread.

Sources: Down to Earth.