Japan has detected African swine fever in a sausage an airline passenger from China brought to the country. Japan has in the past detected genes of the African swine fever virus in food brought from overseas, but never before has the virus been confirmed as being at an infectious stage, according to meat industry publication Meatingplace.
The finding has prompted Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture to strengthen measures against illegal imports of livestock products. The finding also serves as a reminder of the need for increased detection efforts at airports and other ports of entry.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently intercepted a shipment that included illegal pork from China. However, U.S. policy dictates that the prohibited products must be destroyed, and because of that, the U.S. did not test the pork for African swine fever. USDA does not allow importation of pigs or fresh pork products to the U.S. from regions of the world where ASF outbreaks have or are occurring.