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African swine fever: infections quintupled in 14 EU states in 2023

Efsa: highest number of outbreaks recorded among domestic pigs since 2014 /Annex

In 2023, 14 Member States were affected by African swine fever (ASF) and it caused a five-fold increase in outbreaks in domestic pigs compared to the previous year. These are the main findings of the latest annual epidemiological report published by EFSA today.
pig in a cageFor domestic pigs, 2023 saw the largest number of African Swine Fever (ASF) outbreaks since 2014. Croatia and Romania notified 96% of the total number of outbreaks (1,929).

The number of outbreaks in 2023 in wild boar increased by 10% compared to the previous year. The virus was introduced for the first time in Sweden and Croatia and spread to new areas of Italy. It also re-appeared in Greece after a two-year break. 
Germany, Hungary and Slovakia saw the epidemiological situation improve in their countries with the number of outbreaks in wild boar decreasing. 

EFSA’s experts recommend prioritizing passive surveillance , including the searching and testing of wild boar carcasses, rather than active surveillance, including the testing of hunted wild boar for the detection of ASF outbreaks.

Passive surveillance, in particular noticing clinical signs of the disease remains the main mode of detection for ASF also in domestic pig establishments. Therefore, farmers and vets have a particularly important role to play in reporting suspicious cases. 

In October 2024, EFSA will deliver a scientific opinion revising the risk factors for the emergence, spread and persistence of the ASF virus in wild boar populations as well as in domestic pigs. Our advice will support risk managers in their ongoing efforts to prevent, control and eradicate the spread of the ASF virus.

Attached to this EFA News , the full text of the Efsa study on African swine fever.

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EFA News - European Food Agency