Looks like we might have to be even more careful with the pork products we’re buying, you guys! If there are some of you who aren’t already up to speed with the latest news, the outbreak of African Swine Fever in pork has apparently spread to Malaysia, as products tainted with the virus were found in Sarawak.
But what is even more concerning now is apparently pork products containing the same African Swine Fever virus have been found in West Malaysia! More specifically, they are being sold right here in Kuala Lumpur, according to China Press!
During a press conference held by the Director of Veterinary Services Malaysia, Dato’ Dr Quaza Nizamuddin Bin Hassan Nizam, it has been reported that the Veterinary Bureau has found over 60 cases of illegally smuggled luncheon meat made from countries that were affected with the virus in Kuala Lumpur.
This is despite the fact that a ban had been enforced to stop the import of all pork products made from countries that were affected by the African Swine Fever outbreak, which includes China, Mongolia, Vietnam, Cambodia, North Korea, Laos, Philippines and East Timor since 12th November 2018. It can only be surmised that these tainted products have been quietly smuggled into the country, even after the enforcement of the ban.
“The smuggled cans of luncheon meats were manufactured in June of this year, according to their production dates. This means that the products were brought into Malaysia after the ban.”
However, Malaysia still currently remains free from any infection, according to Dr Quaza. A task force has been set up by the Ministry of Agriculture to ensure that pigs and canned pork products sold in the Malaysian market are free from African Swine Fever.
The team is comprised of members from the Veterinary Department, Customs Department, Malaysian Quarantine and Inspection Service, Ministry of Health’s Food Safety and Quality, as well as Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs.
This task force will be responsible for conducting weekly inspections on relevant businesses and restaurants. Dr Quaza also advises all retailers to check if their inventory contained any imported pork products from the affected countries, and instructed them to destroy them promptly.
As for consumers, we are told to keep an eye on any products sold from these affected countries and are advised to report to the relevant authorities if they are found.
To recap, the African Swine Fever is an incredibly contagious haemorrhagic viral disease that affects domesticated and wild pigs, and can cause up to 100% death in infected pigs within two to ten days.
So for those of you who are going grocery shopping, please be sure to take note and avoid all pork products that are from the affected countries! Be sure to also check on the pork you’re eating in restaurants too!
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