African swine fever is a highly contagious and deadly viral disease affecting both domestic and wild pigs of all ages. ASF is not a threat to human health and cannot be transmitted from pigs to humans. It is not a food safety issue.
ASF is found in countries around the world, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. More recently, it has spread through China, Mongolia and Vietnam, as well as within parts of the European Union. It has never been found in the United States – and we want to keep it that way.
ASF is a devastating, deadly disease that would have a significant impact on U.S. livestock producers, their communities and the economy if it were found here. There is no treatment or vaccine available for this disease. The only way to stop this disease is to depopulate all affected or exposed swine herds.
USDA is working closely with other federal and state agencies, the swine industry, and producers to take the necessary actions to protect our nation’s pigs and keep this disease out. This group is also actively preparing to respond if ASF were ever detected in the U.S.
Anyone who works with pigs should be familiar with the signs of ASF:
Immediately report animals with any of these signs to state or federal animal health officials or call USDA’s toll-free number at 1-866-536-7593 for appropriate testing and investigation. Timeliness is essential to preventing the spread of ASF.
On-farm biosecurity is crucial to preventing any animal disease from developing and spreading. All pig owners and anyone involved with pig operations should know and follow strict biosecurity practices to help protect U.S. pigs from ASF. Work with your veterinarian to assess your biosecurity plans and make improvements as needed.
International travelers could unknowingly bring back this disease from an ASF-affected country, especially if they visit farms. Visit the APHIS traveler page to know which items you can bring back into the United States. Some food items may carry disease and threaten domestic agriculture and livestock. If you go to an ASF-affected country, do not bring back pork or pork products.
Declare any international farm visits to U.S. Customs and Border Protection when you return. Make sure you thoroughly clean and disinfect, or dispose of, any clothing or shoes that you wore around pigs, before returning to the U.S. Do not visit a farm, premises with pigs, livestock market, sale barn, zoo, circus, pet store with pot-bellied pigs, or any other animal facility with pigs for at least 5 days after you return.
We have many resources available to help spread the word about how to prevent ASF.