Singapore suspends frozen pork imports from Japan's Gifu prefecture: AVA

Singapore suspends frozen pork imports from Japan's Gifu prefecture: AVA

FILE PHOTO: Pigs are pictured at a farm on the outskirts of Kunming
FILE PHOTO. (Photo: Reuters/Jason Lee)

SINGAPORE: The Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority (AVA) said on Saturday (Oct 27) that it suspended the import of frozen pork from Japan in September, after the country saw its first outbreak of swine fever in 26 years.

In the month since the initial suspension, AVA has worked with Japan to adjust the import restriction to the affected prefecture, the authority said in response to questions from Channel NewsAsia.

Currently, only frozen pork imports from Gifu prefecture in central Japan are suspended; those from unaffected prefectures are now allowed into Singapore, AVA said.

The disease found in central Japan's Gifu prefecture is called classical swine fever (CSF), also known as hog cholera, and is a different strain from the deadly African swine fever that has broken out in China.

READ: Japan culls 546 hogs after detecting first swine fever outbreak in 26 years

The ban on pork imports does not cover processed products.

"Processed pork products from approved establishments in affected areas that have been heat-treated to inactivate classical swine fever are allowed to be imported," AVA said.

While classical swine fever is highly contagious for pigs, it does not infect humans, AVA said.

That said, it is a production disease of economic importance and its presence could impact trade.

"To mitigate the risk of incursion of classical swine fever, AVA requires countries exporting pork to Singapore to be free from it," AVA said.

"There is minimal impact to the supply of pork and pork products to Singapore. AVA will continue to monitor developments and take further action if necessary," it added.

Source: CNA/aj(hm)

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