5 September 2000
New case of swine fever in Suffolk

By FWi staff

A FURTHER case of classical swine fever has been confirmed on a farm in the surveillance area on the coast of Suffolk, the Ministry of Agriculture has announced.

This confirmation follows widespread expectation that more cases of the disease would be uncovered.

Earlier on Tuesday (05 Sep) MAFF told European veterinary experts in Brussels that animals on two more units were showing clinical signs of the disease.

The new case brings to seven the number of cases to be confirmed in East Anglia since 12 August.

Possible links to the previous cases are being investigated. There are about 5000 pigs on the farm and these will slaughtered in the next couple of days, says MAFF.

A further infected area was brought into place at 6pm on Tuesday (05 Sep).

Much of this lies within the infected area declared in Suffolk on 12 August, with an additional area extending a little to the north of the existing area, reports MAFF.

As a result, many farms already under restriction will have those restrictions extended for a further period and a few new farms will be subject to movement restrictions.

Farm minister Nick Brown said: Movement restrictions are vital to controlling the disease.

I am examining urgently with the industry ways in which further assistance can be provided to farmers faced with the economic consequences of surveillance zone movement restrictions.

Farmer have complained bitterly that the 35 per pig offered by MAFF for the slaughter of animals to stop overcrowding in the zones is not enough.

Representatives say affected producers should get 100 per pig and have asked other farmers to donate 20p for every pig they sell to help East Anglian colleagues.

Earlier on Tuesday, the veterinary committee of Europe agreed to lift the ban on exports of live pigs and semen from Essex from 15 September.

This decision is subject to no further outbreaks of swine fever in the county.

Brussels is expected to approve the decision on Wednesday (6 Sep). However, restrictions in Suffolk and Norfolk will remain at least until 15 October.