U.S. Pork is not affected by the African swine fever outbreaks in other countries and is safe to eat.
- ASF does not affect humans and therefore is not a public health threat.
- Pork products from animals with ASF are safe to eat.
- The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has measures in place to prevent sick animals from entering the food supply.
- As always, you should always follow safe handling and cooking instructions to protect your family’s health.
African swine fever is a highly contagious viral disease impacting only pigs, not people—so it is not a public health threat or food-safety concern.
- ASF cannot be transmitted to humans through contact with pigs or pork.
- Members of the pig family, including domestic wild pigs, are the only animals susceptible to the ASF virus.
- ASF can be transmitted to pigs through feeding of uncooked garbage containing contaminated pork products. The Swine Health Protection Act regulates the feeding of food waste containing any meat products to swine, ensuring that all food waste fed to swine is properly treated to kill any disease organisms.
- ASF is easily transmitted to other pigs through direct contact with infected pigs or their waste, contaminated clothing, feed, equipment and vehicles, and in some cases, by blood-sucking insects, including some tick species.
African swine fever virus is a highly contagious viral disease impacting only pigs, not people, so it is not a public health threat or food safety concern. The World Organization for Animal Health, of which the U.S. is a member, considers African swine fever to be a trade limiting foreign animal disease of swine. Countries with confirmed cases are subject to international trade restrictions aimed at reducing the risk of introduction of the disease through trade. The United States has never had a case of African swine fever and there are strict animal health and import requirements enforced by USDA APHIS Veterinary Services, USDA APHIS Plant Protection and Quarantine and Customs and Border Protection to prevent entry into the United States. There is a national response plan for African swine fever that has been developed by USDA veterinary services.
In response to the current situation in China, the National Pork Board has been working closely with the National Pork Producers Council, the American Association of Swine Veterinarians and the Swine Health Information Center to monitor the situation. The organizations are working collaboratively to gather intelligence, engage subject matter experts, assess risk and determine appropriate actions moving forward to address the issue. For more detailed information on African swine fever, visit Iowa State University’s Center for Food Safety and Public Health.