What is African Swine Fever?

African Swine Fever (ASF) is a pig disease that is harmless to humans, pets and other animals. When it occurs in pigs, it can be very serious and causes a high mortality rate.

Has ASF occurred in Canadian pigs?

No.  ASF has never been detected in Canadian pigs.  It also has never been detected in U.S. pigs.

Can humans get ASF?

Although ASF is a serious disease in pigs, ASF is harmless to humans, pets and other animals. 

Can I still eat pork?

All pork is safe to eat, and Canadians can continue to enjoy pork products. ASF only affects pigs and is harmless to humans.  

What is the likelihood of ASF being present in the pork product I bought in the grocery store?

Pork from pigs with ASF will not enter the food supply. In the unlikely event that a person encountered pork from a pig with ASF, it would be harmless to him or her.  ASF is also destroyed through heat like cooking. The CFIA has strict restrictions on the imports of pigs and pork products from countries with confirmed ASF cases to protect our pig herds.

If humans cannot get ASF, why are we hearing so much about it?

Although ASF is harmless to humans, if it occurred in a Canadian pig, it could harm pigs and impact Canada’s ability to export pork, which would impact pig farmers and pork companies.    

Can my pet get ASF?

ASF is harmless to pets and other animals. 

What are the signs of ASF in a pig?

ASF symptoms in pigs are serious and include high fever, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea and difficulty breathing. A trained veterinarian can identify the symptoms, but a test is needed to confirm the diagnosis.

How is ASF transmitted?

ASF is a disease that only affects pigs and can be spread through physical contact between pigs, through ticks, vehicles, clothing and contaminated feed.

 There are wild pigs in my area. Can they catch ASF?

ASF can affect wild pigs that exist in parts of Canada. Thorough surveillance has not identified ASF in Canada’s wild pig population.

If ASF is found in Canada, will pork products be recalled?

No recall will be necessary. Pork from an infected pig will not enter the food supply, but even if a human came into contact with pork from an infected pig, it would pose no food safety or public health risk. 

If travelling, what should we know about eating pork or coming into contact with pigs in other countries?

ASF is harmless to humans, but humans can spread  ASF through contaminated clothes or equipment and by bringing pork from other countries into the U.S.  Do your research before travelling. If you are visiting a country with confirmed cases of ASF, do not interact with wild pigs or visit pig farms. Upon arrival in Canada, travellers must be diligent at the border and declare any food or animal products they are carrying or if they have