Foot and Mouth Disease in Asia


Presented March 4, 2011 by the Secretary's Advisory Committee on Animal Health, USDA APHIS Veterinary Services. Information provided to WSVMA by the Washington State Department of Agriculture.

February 17, 2011 - S. Korea's FMD caused by virus from Vietnam: gov't

SEOUL, (Yonhap) -- South Korea's latest foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) virus is closely related to the one found in Vietnam, a state animal quarantine agency said Thursday.

The highly contagious animal disease, first confirmed on Nov. 29, has since spread to six provinces and four major cities in the country, forcing the government to cull and bury more than 3.36 million livestock so far.

February 17, 2011 - Gov't says 27 livestock burial sites near water source need maintenance

By Kim Eun-jung

SEOUL, (Yonhap) -- Twenty-seven livestock burial sites near the upper region of the Han River, which runs through Seoul, need maintenance work to prevent landfill leachate from polluting drinking water or nearby streams, the Ministry of Environment said Thursday.

The ministry has conducted an extensive survey of burial sites for cows and pigs culled to prevent the further spread of food and mouth disease (FMD) amid concerns that reckless burials may cause a massive environmental disaster. Impromptu burial sites have been dug into slopes or groundwater reservoir feeds due to a lack of space to contain the volume of infected livestock in the crowded country.

Update provided by WSDA

February 2, 2011 - Three million livestock culled in South Korea

Agence France Presse, AsiaOne News

SEOUL, S KOREA - South Korea said Wednesday it had destroyed more than three million livestock as it battles the worst outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in decades, amid concerns that it could spread to the rest of Asia.

The agriculture ministry said it stepped up emergency disinfection as the outbreak showed few signs of abating after being reported in 148 locations.

The ministry has increased the number of quarantine officials at hundreds of disinfection checkpoints since the annual exodus for Lunar New Year holidays began on Tuesday, with some 31 million people on the move during the period.

People have been advised not to travel to areas hit by the highly contagious animal disease.

The ministry said all visitors and vehicles should undergo disinfection before they enter any of the locations hit by the outbreak.

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February 3, 2011 - TAHC Officials Urge Awareness of Global Foot and Mouth Disease Threat

Texas Animal Health Commission

AUSTIN – The Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) reminds Texas producers, marketers and veterinarians that maintaining a Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) free U.S.A. requires constant awareness and vigilance. Anyone involved with livestock needs to recognize the general signs of FMD and how to report suspicious symptoms. FMD is not contagious to people, but the viral disease that affects cattle, hogs and other cloven hoofed animals is characterized by the presence of vesicles in the mouth, or on the muzzle, teats and feet. The FMD virus can accidently be carried on people’s clothing, footwear and vehicles from one farm location to another.

“In today’s world where people travel and trade so much internationally, we need to remember that the introduction of FMD to Texas livestock is an ongoing threat. Producers should always be aware of who’s coming in contact with their livestock and where those people may have been previously,” said Dr. Dee Ellis, Texas’ State Veterinarian. The introduction of FMD would create severe economic and trade implications for Texas producers, added Dr. Ellis.

The TAHC and United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (USDA-APHIS) have created state and national response plans for dealing with high consequence animal diseases such as FMD if introduced. The TAHC and USDA routinely partner with other federal agencies as well, to help prevent the intentional or accidental introduction of foreign animal diseases or foreign pests into the United States. The TAHC works closely with the various Texas livestock industries also, to maintain viable contingency plans in case FMD was introduced into the state.

Vigilance and sound biosecurity practices are the best first-line of defense against FMD. Good practices include:

  • Understanding the animal disease status of foreign countries when visiting farms or ranches
  • Thorough cleaning and disinfection of footwear and other clothing after foreign travel
  • Following USDA APHIS and US Customs & Border Patrol restrictions for import of animal products
  • Controlling international visitor contact with Texas livestock species and agriculture facilities
  • FMD is present in a number of continents including South America, Africa and Asia, with recent outbreaks occurring in South Korea, Japan and Bulgaria. FMD was last diagnosed on U.S. soil in 1929.

Suspicious symptoms can be reported to the TAHC year-round, 24-hours-a-day by calling 1-800-550-8242.

January 25, 2011 - Oregon Ag on alert - Asia FMD, Global travelers warned not to bring back pests and diseases

Oregon Depart of Agriculture, Oregon Natural Resource Report

Be aware of where you are traveling and beware what you might bring back to Oregon. That's the bottom line message from agriculture officials to international travelers who may provide a conveyance for pests and diseases that could threaten the state's agriculture and environment."The world has gotten smaller and you can be halfway around the globe in a day," says Dan Hilburn, administrator of the Oregon Department of Agriculture's Plant Division and member of the Oregon Invasive Species Council. "It's no problem for spores, seeds, and even insects to survive the travel. There are many examples of people bringing back with them a pest or a disease to the US that resulted in millions of dollars in crop losses or control costs."

The latest concern is an animal disease. Foot and mouth disease (FMD) has emerged in South Korea, one of Oregon's top agricultural trading partners.

It has also been reported in Vietnam. FMD is a severe, highly communicable viral disease of cattle and swine that produces fever and blisters. It can also affect sheep, goats, deer, and other cloven-hoofed ruminants. FMD is not a food safety problem, but an affliction that does impact meat and milk production. It is not a human health issue but people can spread the disease. While not seen in the US since 1929, foot and mouth disease is just an ocean away.

"For us right now, it's a matter of getting people aware," says ODA's Don Hansen, state veterinarian. "If you are traveling to these countries, be aware coming back. If you are entertaining guests from these countries, be aware of their presence."

Specifically, Oregonians who might be traveling to Korea or Vietnam should not set foot in livestock operations that may be in the middle of the outbreak. Upon return, travelers should observe stringent biosecurity measures that include washing clothes worn overseas and avoiding Oregon farms for up to 10 days.

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January 18, 2011 - Additional FMD cases found in S. Korea

SEOUL, (Yonhap) -- South Korea confirmed two additional cases of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) on Tuesday as the government considers revamping its national quarantine system.

The disease hit a pig farm in Yesan and a cattle farm in Daegu 134 kilometers and 300km from Seoul, respectively, bringing the total number of confirmed FMD outbreaks to 122, the farm ministry said.

All 3,110 animals at the two farms have been ordered destroyed, along with livestock within a 500-meter radius of the sites, so as to prevent further spread of the disease, the ministry said. The outbreak in Daegu is the first reported for the city, although there were large numbers of outbreaks in nearby areas.

Related to the outbreaks that have been going on for more than 50 days, Farm Minister Yoo Jeong-bok said there is a pressing need to revamp the country's emergency quarantine measures.

"It may be necessary to look at the quarantine system from scratch to prevent possible outbreaks in the future," he said, without going into details.

FMD is highly contagious and affects all cloven-hoofed animals such as cattle, pigs, deer, goats and buffalo. It is classified as a "List A" disease by the Paris-based World Organization for Animal Health, although it is harmless to humans.

The disease, meanwhile, has forced Seoul to cull and bury more than 2.1 million heads of cattle, pigs, goats and deer with damage estimated to run to around 2 trillion won (US$1.78 billion).

The country had moved to vaccinate a limited number of animals on Dec. 25 after initial quarantine efforts proved inadequate to control the outbreak that has spread to most parts of the country.

Authorities said that more than 12 million vaccine doses will be imported by the end of the month so all animals can be vaccinated.

Seoul said last week that it will vaccinate all livestock across the country, including those on Jeju Island off the country's southwestern coast, which have not been affected so far. South Korea has some 13 million cows and pigs in the country.

In addition to the latest series of outbreaks, the country was hit by the disease in 2000, 2002 and two more times early last year.

January 15, 2011 - Foot and Mouth Disease in Asia poses risk to Pacific NW

Sparks E-Newsletter

Since April 2010, there have been outbreaks of foot and mouth disease (FMD) in China, South Korea, North Korea, Japan and Mongolia. Two more Asian countries’ governments, Malaysia and Vietnam, recently revealed they have been dealing with FMD as well. On December 21, 2010, the South Korean government began vaccinating livestock in the areas surrounding the outbreaks. Despite this, the outbreak continues to spread with additional cases identified. To date, more than 778,000 animals on 2,769 farms have been culled in South Korea alone. 

The Washington State Department of Agriculture is monitoring animal disease reports from South Korea as well as developing biosecurity measures to prevent the introduction of FMD in Washington. Recent FMD outbreaks are in close proximity to United States military bases and the risk of returning military personnel bringing the disease into the United States in general and Washington State in particular is of great concern. McChord Air Force Base receives regular flights each week that originate from areas of infection in Korea.

January 5, 2011 - FMD spreading rapidly to pigs in S. Korea

SEOUL, (Yonhap) -- South Korea's foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) is spreading rapidly from cattle to pigs, raising the need for a more extensive use of vaccines to stem further outbreaks, the government said Wednesday.

The farm ministry and local governments said that despite extensive quarantine efforts, four fresh outbreaks were confirmed at pig farms across the country, resulting in the culling of 47,300 animals.

January 5, 2011 - Foot-and-mouth disease losses to rise to 1 trillion won

Foot-and-mouth disease is expected to inflict damage worth 1 trillion on (892 million U.S. dollars) on Korea.

As of Monday, the number of animals culled since the Nov. 29 outbreak of the disease in Andong, North Gyeonsang Province, hit 778,850.

The Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry said, “Direct damage by the disease will reach 700 billion won (624 million U.S. dollars), including compensation for slaughter.”

“If the scale of culling increases, the compensation amount will grow so it’s difficult to calculate a total sum.”

The 700 billion won excludes costs for vaccine purchases, management of disinfectant and checkpoints, livelihood support, and purchases of animals raised in areas near affected farms. With the number of farms whose animals are subject to slaughter surpassing 2,700, compensation to the farms is expected to exceed 30 billion won (26.8 million dollars).

Including intangible damage, the disease will cost the nation more than 1 trillion won (892 million dollars). With events by provincial governments to mark the New Year canceled, the disease has taken a heavy toll on provincial economies.

Until Korea restores its status of being clean from the disease, exports of meat and processed livestock goods will be hit hard.

An Agriculture Ministry official said, “The allocation of additional funds will prevent a budget shortage but snowballing costs will prove a burden."


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