FMD recurs, days after alert lowered

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FMD recurs, days after alert lowered

Just 27 days after the central government completed livestock culls to stop foot-and-mouth disease (FMD), and five days after it lowered the alert level, the highly contagious disease has broken out once again at a pig farm in Yeongcheon, North Gyeongsang.

According to the Ministry for Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, the farm, with 67 pigs, was confirmed yesterday to be positive for the FMD virus by the National Veterinary Research and Quarantine Service. All of the farm’s pigs had been vaccinated.

The owner of the farm reported Saturday afternoon that some of his animals were limping slightly. He said 10 pigs had already died without clear reasons.

The ministry said the virus found yesterday, serotype O, was the same one that the central government has been vaccinating against for months.

The ministry said the national veterinary service will investigate why FMD broke out at a farm where all the animals were vaccinated in February.

“Even though animals are vaccinated, farmers could have done it in a wrong way or some animals could have immunity against the vaccine,” a ministry official said.

Another ministry official said, “In the upcoming future, the disease could break out sporadically around the previously FMD-infected regions.”

Right after the outbreak, the North Gyeongsang Provincial Government immediately culled six infected pigs at the farm and took emergency measures inside and outside the contagious farm, such as spraying disinfectant.

The outbreak yesterday was just five days after the ministry lowered the alert level from “warning” to “caution” and said, “the FMD crisis is actually over. Within one or two weeks, we expect the crisis to settle down.”

A 57-year-old livestock farmer in Yeongcheon who lives near the infected farm said, “I have always been worried about the recurrence of foot-and-mouth disease, even though I vaccinated my animals. Now I feel frustrated by the outbreak and worried if it will take more time to normalize the livestock market.”

Another livestock farmer, 64, who raises about 100 pigs nearby, said, “I have been suffering from financial difficulties due to FMD, but now it broke out again. I don’t know what to do now.”

Meanwhile, a poultry farm in Yeongcheon, where about 17,000 chickens are being raised, was confirmed to be positive for avian influenza A (AI) after the owner reported the deaths of 46 chickens.

The farm, located 700 meters (0.4 miles) from a poultry farm where AI flu broke out on April 5, uses the same routes to deliver animals and feed, which could have led to the infection, quarantine officials assume.

Since the first FMD outbreak on Nov. 28 in Andong, North Gyeongsang, the viral disease rapidly spread throughout the nation, except for Jeolla and Jeju.

In an effort to contain the disease, the central government killed more than 3.5 million animals infected with foot-and-mouth disease and avian influenza at 4,133 disposal sites. Officials also vaccinated more than 11.7 million animals nationwide. Experts estimate that about 3 trillion won ($2.75 billion) in state funds was spend to far to fight FMD.

By Kim Hee-jin []

한글 관련 기사 [중앙일보]

‘종식 선언’ 24일 만에…영천에서 또 돼지 구제역

확인된 어미 돼지 6마리 살처분
농식품부, 이동제한 조치 안 내려

잠잠하던 구제역이 경북 영천에서 다시 발생해 비상이 걸렸다.

지난 16일 구제역 의심증상을 보인 영천시 금호읍 황정리 한 농가의 어미 돼지 6마리가 17일 구제역 양성 판정을 받아 살처분됐다. 이 농가에서는 1주일 전부터 어미돼지 유두에 허물이 벗겨지고 새끼돼지 10여 마리가 폐사해 농민이 당국에 신고했다. 이 농가에서는 지난 2월 1, 2차 예방백신 접종을 했다. 구제역이 다시 발생한 건 지난달 21일 충남 홍성에서 마지막으로 구제역에 감염된 가축을 살처분한 뒤 27일 만이다. 정부는 지난달 24일 구제역 위기경보 단계를 ‘심각’에서 ‘경계’로 낮춰 사실상 구제역 종식을 선언했다.

유정복 농림수산식품부 장관은 일요일인 17일 출근해 대책을 논의했다. 농식품부는 구제역이 확산하지는 않을 것으로 예상했다. 이번에 확인된 바이러스가 지난해 말부터 유행했던 것과 같은 유형(O형)으로 이에 대한 백신 접종이 끝났기 때문이다. 이에 따라 방역대 설정이나 이동제한 조치는 취하지 않기로 했다. 구제역 재발 소식에 농민들은 큰 충격을 받았다. 영천과 인접한 청도군은 구제역 종식을 알리는 청도 소싸움 대회를 열고 있다.

영천, 고병원성 AI도 발생

한편 경북도 가축질병방역대책본부는 이날 "영천시 오수동 농장에서 폐사한 닭 40여 마리를 정밀 검사한 결과 고병원성 AI(조류인플루엔자)로 확인됐다”고 밝혔다.

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