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Dominican Republic Enlists Military to Fight ASF

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The Dominican Republic is limiting shipments of pigs and mobilizing its military to contain the spread of African Swine Fever. Reuters says the Dominican ag ministry made the announcement as the U.S. and Mexico tightened border checks to avoid spreading the infection.

The U.S. and Mexico are both boosting airport inspections to stop travelers from bringing in Dominican pork products that could carry the virus. Both countries had previously blocked pork imports from the Dominican Republic.

U.S. testing of almost 400 samples from Dominican-raised hogs from farms and backyards shows that the disease is in a small population of backyard pigs in two provinces, which together contain almost 20,000 pigs. The total Dominican herd numbers 1.8 million.

The ag ministry is prohibiting live and slaughtered pig movement from those provinces, noting that there will be “total military control in all strategic points of both provinces,” and the ministry will help disinfect affected areas.

The disease originated in Africa before it spread to Asia and Europe, killing hundreds of millions of pigs and reshaping global meat and feed markets.