USDA Under Secretary Greg Ibach says scientists have pegged an effective vaccine for the African Swine Fever Virus is at least eight years away. The Fence Post Dot Com says he made the announcement during a hearing in front of the House Agriculture Livestock and Foreign Agriculture Subcommittee hearing on animal pest disease prevention and response capabilities.
Ibach says the USDA is also working with Canada on research on how to detect the disease, as well as on biosecurity measures. In fact, the agency is working closely with both Canada and Mexico to control African Swine Fever, which hasn’t been found in North America.
If the virus does show up, USDA would consult with governments of both countries before deciding where and when to limit animal movements. Ibach was asked about importing organic animal feed from China, where the ASF virus is prevalent. He says imports of feed from China are much lower than they’ve been, but also pointed out that “shutting down imports of feed would hurt the swine industry.