Tougher measures taken in China against ASF illegal vaccines
China's Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs announced this week that it is going to adopt severe measures for illegal production and sale of African swine fever (ASF) vaccines. The country works hard to rebuild its pig herd after an ongoing ASF outbreak that wiped out half of the pig inventory. However, the use of illicit vaccines has caused a new chronic form of African swine fever, which causes a debilitating condition that can reduce pig production, but is more difficult to detect.
The ministry said identification and testing should be strengthened and asked local governments to identify any positive samples of the virus and report any strains with artificial gene exclusions to provincial veterinary authorities as soon as possible.
All locations should increase the punishment for illegal activities related to fake vaccines, with any suspicion of criminal cases promptly referred to the judiciary, officials announced according to Reuters.
Pharmaceutical companies would be fined the maximum amount, their operating licenses revoked and those prohibited from producing veterinary products for life. Reports from the local authorities are expected on June 30 and November 30. Recent outbreaks of "classsic" ASF virus have been reported in the provinces of n Sichuan, Hubei and Yunnan and several mutations of the virus have been reported by researchers in the first two months of 2021.
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