KUCHING, March 8 — Pigs from the Pasir Putih farming area in Simunjan are still safe from African Swine Fever (ASF) and are still being exported to Singapore.

In giving this assurance, Minister of Modernisation of Agriculture and Regional Development Datuk Seri Dr Stephen Rundi Utom also states that the farm utilises high biosecurity system, where the pigs are compartmentalised.

“Not all farms in Sarawak are affected by ASF, but quite a substantial (number) in Miri, Sibu, Betong and Sarikei (are). That is why we have to block (the movement of pigs) from going to Pasir Putih.

“The importer from Singapore is a bit concerned, but they understand that we have (done) everything and as far as they are concerned, (the pigs are) clean.

“Most of the exported pigs are from Pasir Putih,” he said in a press conference after launching a seminar on “Red Claw Crayfish Culture in Sarawak” here today.

Dr Rundi pointed out that ASF, like any unexpected disease, was “a disaster” and the moment any of the pigs had been found to be infected with the virus, culling must be done.

He said while this was “something very frustrating to see”, the Department of Veterinary Services (DVS) Sarawak had been doing its best in preventing this “disaster” from reoccurring.

“Thousands (of pigs) have been culled, apart from those dying naturally from the disease.

“If one or two died naturally, the whole farm would be affected. We have to do culling to stop (the virus) from spreading to another pig farm,” he said.

Dr Rundi said the pig carcasses must be buried to prevent the spread of the virus and in this regard, he acknowledged the news on social media about some places that did not dispose of the carcasses properly.

“I have instructed the director of DVS to look into this. If need be, we would come up with the relevant SOP (standard operating procedures),” he said. — Borneo Post Online