ASF detected in South Africa’s Western Cape

Reuters reports that outbreaks of the deadly pig disease have been recorded in the Free State, Eastern Cape and Gauteng provinces.

"A survey to determine the extent of the disease's spread in Mfuleni and the immediate surrounding area has already been initiated and will include the collection of blood samples from selected sick pigs from suspect farms," Ivan Meyer, the Western Cape's agriculture minister, said in a statement on Thursday 25 February.

African swine fever is incurable in pigs, and poses a threat to food stocks, but is harmless to humans.

China, the world's biggest pork producer, reported new variants of the African swine fever virus on Thursday, natural mutations in the virus that ravaged China's pig herd during 2018 and 2019 and which continues to kill hogs.