Publication: African Swine Fever Survey in a European Context
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African swine fever (ASF) is currently the most threatening disease for domestic and wild pigs worldwide. Wild boar has been the main affected species in all EU countries except for Romania, where most notifications occur in domestic pigs. The spread of ASF in wild boar is challenging to control; risk factors are harder to identify and establish than in domestic pigs, which, together with an underestimation of the disease and the lack of treatment or an effective vaccine, are hindering control and eradication efforts. We distributed two online questionnaires, one for domestic pigs and one for wild boar, to experts of different background and countries in Europe, to explore risk factors in relation to ASF control connected to farming, hunting, trade, the environment, and domestic pig and wild boar populations. Overall, wild boar movements were estimated to pose the highest risk of ASF introduction and spread. The movement of pork and pork products for own consumption also ranked high. Here we explored, in addition to the assessment of risk pathways, the identification of risks of transmission at the domestic/wild boar interface, the importance of biosecurity practices and improved control efforts, and controversial opinions that require further attention.