KUCHING: The people should not panic or be petrified to consume pork as the African Swine Fever (ASF) does not spread to humans while the pork supply for the upcoming Chinese New Year celebration will not be affected, said veterinarian Dr Ng Siew Thiam.
The ASF is caused by a highly contagious virus, which originated from Africa and usually found in bush pigs and ward hogs. The virus is transmitted by soft ticks when biting these wild pigs.
“We suspected that the virus spreads more from processed meat products and undercooked meat.
“Products purchased from overseas regardless of its origin contributed more in the outbreak,” Ng told New Sarawak Tribune in a phone interview on Friday (Jan 28).
At present, movement of pigs from one division to another is under strict Standard Operation Procedure (SOP) to regulate the spread of the plague. Infected pigs reported to have contracted ASF in farms in Sibu and Sarikei have been culled to destroy the virus and its host.
Commenting on the recent outbreak in Sibu and Sarikei, Ng said that the source of the virus came from hunting activities.
“Wild boars most probably contained the virus while commercial pigs and pork are safe to consume,” he added.
On another matter, he said the shortage of chicken eggs in Miri recently had also been raised.
“The problem with the issue is due to controlled prices. The festive season has shockingly created a high demand and hence the shortage.
“Main producers in the state are based in Kuching and Sibu. Additional cost is required to send out the egg supply to other divisions,” said Ng.
Due to the price control, he said the supply of eggs were being controlled.
“Farmers have to be reluctant in supplying the eggs to keep the demand and supply chain in balance,” he added.