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Declaring Farm Visits in ASF Positive Countries to Customs

When returning to the United States after visiting a farm or being in contact with animals in a country (or countries) with African swine fever (ASF), or any other foreign animal disease, you should declare this information to US Customs and Border Patrol via written form, airport kiosk, or verbally. Then you should be diverted for an ag secondary screening by an ag specialist. Unfortunately, reports to pork industry organizations indicate the secondary screening is not taking place routinely as required. To help the industry understand the scope of this issue and safeguard the health of the US swine herd, the Swine Health Information Center (SHIC), National Pork Board, National Pork Producers Council, and American Association of Swine Veterinarians are asking you to report your experience if you are not diverted for secondary screening with return to the US following overseas travel.

SHIC Executive Director Dr. Paul Sundberg will be aggregating this information which will be shared on behalf of these four industry organizations with Customs and Border Patrol in an effort to quantify this suspected lapse. Again, if you are NOT diverted for secondary screening after declaring you have been on a farm or in contact with animals in an ASF or other foreign animal disease positive nation, please email the following to psundberg@swinehealth.org:

  • Your name (optional – please specify if you do NOT want your name shared)
  • Country (or countries) visited
  • Date and time of return
  • Airline and flight number
  • Arrival airport
  • Declaration method (written form, kiosk, or verbally)
  • Customs and Border Patrol employee name, if possible (displayed on right side of shirt)
  • Any other pertinent circumstances

ASF is endemic in Sardinia, most countries of subSaharan Africa, and some West African countries. The spread of ASF through Russia, Belgium, the Caucasus, the Baltic states, Poland, and China is raising concern in the US pork industry. At present, ASF has never been reported in the United States, Canada, Australia, or New Zealand.

This travel protocol affects not just ASF-affected countries but any with active foreign animal disease. Review SHIC’s global disease monitoring reports here.

Source : Swine Health Information Center