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Pig population in Belarus drops

Due to the spread of African Swine Fever (ASF) the pig population in Belarus during the last two years dropped by almost a quarter, reported the veterinary service of the country.

In 1 January 2014 in all categories of farms the number of pigs amounted to only 3.3 million which is 22.2% less than the same period in 2012, according to a recent report by the National Statistics Committee of Belarus. According to independent estimations, the total losses of the country's pig industry due the spread of ASF has reached the figure of about US$100 mln.

Officially the authorities of Belarus confirmed only five outbreaks of the disease, the first one occurred on 30 April  2013. However, experts say that ASF has already been registered in the country in January 2013, and maybe even earlier. Experts warn that Belarus has been hiding outbreaks  and is continuing to do that.

The fact that the Belarus has been hiding was also confirmed by the representatives of Russian Meat Producers Union and its head Sergei Yushin. According to experts, the total number of outbreaks in the country may actually reach 15.

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