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Russian authorities eliminate private pork farming in ASF fight

Russian authorities are taking unprecedented measures in eradicating African Swine Fever (ASF) in the Krasnodar region. The local government has recently announced the decision to close all private farms in the region until October 15.

"To reduce the threat of the spread of ASF, it has been decided to sell all pig stock located in facilities with low biosecurity as well as stock found on small private farms and backyards to meat processing plants till October 15, 2012. This is estimated to be about 200,000 pigs," said a regional Ministry of Agriculture announcement. Therefore, until October 15, all private pig production in the Krasnodar region will completely cease.

According to regional authorities, the reduction of the pigs’ population will also help to reduce the risk of spread of ASF to the larger pig farms. The large pork production enterprises will have to purchase pigs from the nearby farms and private households using their own funds.

"These companies have come out with an initiative to buy out all the pigs’ population in the 20 km zone around their enterprises," said in the official statement of the government of the Krasnodar region.

The press service added, “Also today we [the Krasnodar regional government] reached an agreement with local meat processing plants, they will buy all pigs from the local farmers.”

Takeovers
At the recent press conference journalists asked deputy head of Rosselkhoznadzor, Nikolai Vlasov, about a widely held opinion among Russian farmers that the ASF virus is being actively used by corrupt officials, clearing the way for larger pig farms to takeover smaller ones.

Vlasov replied, “I get asked this question in every region where ASF outbreaks have been registered. I think it is hard for a man to be angry at some infection or at nature, so he invents a scapegoat, a ‘personification of evil’. Only a madman would use such a dangerous virus to fight competitors. And as for takeovers of private households, I don’t know who would desire such family farms, except their owners.” (by Vladislav Vorotnikov)
 

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