In response to the recent spread of African Swine Fever, DAWR has increased its border activities and seized products at international airports and mail centres.
African Swine Fever (ASF) is present in countries of sub-Saharan Africa, and has lately been detected in other parts of the world such as Eastern European countries, including Russia and the Ukraine. It has most recently been reported in Belgium, China and Mongolia.
In response to the increased spread of ASF, the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources (DAWR) has increased its border activities. As part of this, a sample of pork products seized at international airports and mail processing centres over a two-week period has been tested at the Australian Animal Health Laboratory in Geelong. The test results show 6 pork products from 152 tested were contaminated with the ASF virus.
This detection does not change Australia’s ASF-free status. The test results do however reinforce the importance of continued compliance with Australia’s strict biosecurity requirements. African Swine Fever is not present in Australia. If introduced it would have a significant impact on pig health and production, and contribute to wider economic impacts caused by a loss of access to overseas markets for our pork products.
Before placing orders overseas or making online purchases, importers should check what can and cannot be consigned to Australia. Pork products cannot be brought into Australia except under specific import conditions. We all have a role in preventing ASF, and other exotic animal diseases from arriving in Australia - even if we don’t own or work around farm animals.
Bringing banned products to Australia puts our environment, industries and animal health in jeopardy. Our biosecurity officers’ work at airports and mail centres safeguards Australia’s unique environment, $60 billion agricultural industries and plant, animal and human health status from biosecurity risks.
Humans are not susceptible to ASF.