JOHANNESBURG - The Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries said on Thursday that there had been no new clinical cases of foot and mouth disease.
"Since the last positive location was reported on 04 February 2019, five weeks ago, there had been no new clinical cases of foot and mouth disease or serologically positive test results in the epidemiological groups surveyed. Roughly 13,500 cattle distributed across 27 diptanks have been vaccinated and identified as vaccinated in the former foot and mouth disease-free area since 14 January 2019," spokesperson Rincert Moremi said in a statement.
"On 7 January this year the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries confirmed and reported an outbreak of foot and mouth disease in the high surveillance area of the foot and mouth disease-free zone in Limpopo, adjacent to the protection zone. Subsequently, South Africa lost its World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) recognised foot and mouth disease-free zone without vaccination status."
The department said valuable information was solicited from more than 400 local livestock owners across 16 rural villages interviewed during February and they were assessing the obtained information to strategise a way forward to regain the foot and mouth disease-free zone status for the country.
"The next steps have to be considered, carefully taking into account timelines and available resources. The department appreciates the technical advice from world-renowned experts and the practical guidance from the private sector that informs their plan of action."