Imports of canned Vietnamese pork products banned

Imports of canned Vietnamese pork products have been banned after a pork liver paste from the Southeast Asian country tested positive for African swine fever virus, according to the Cabinet-level Council of Agriculture Dec. 25.
Announcing the decision, COA head and Central Emergency Operation Center Director Chen Chi-chun said the suspect item was identified Dec. 9, adding that the ban on imports was imposed Dec. 17.
The embargo is a safety precaution, Chen said, adding that the ASF virus itself is killed during canning under high-temperature disinfection, but its nucleic acid can still be detected.
The World Organization for Animal Health has so far confirmed ASF outbreaks across Asia in Cambodia, China, East Timor, Indonesia, Laos, Mongolia, Myanmar, North Korea, South Korea, Vietnam and the Philippines, according to the COA.
Given the large number of inbound and outbound travelers expected over next month’s Lunar New Year holiday, enhanced border control measures have been put in place to prevent illegal meat imports, the COA said.
First-time offenders found bringing meat products into the country from areas affected by ASF within the past three years will be fined NT$200,000 (US$6,483), with the penalty increasing to NT$1 million for repeat offenders. (RAY-E)

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