A pig pandemic? African swine fever has come to the Americas for the first time in four decades
Another pandemic is knocking on our door, but this time it’s coming for the pigs, Wired reports. African swine fever, which wiped out half the pig population in China a couple years back, arrived in Haiti and the Dominican Republic this summer. Now, U.S. regulators are frantically trying to keep it away from the states. The disease poses no threat to humans, but it can devastate hog populations: There is no cure—though there are a handful of vaccine candidates—and the virus kills nearly all of the animals who become infected. A single case detected in the United States would trigger a 72-hour halt of all hog transportation and slaughter—and would likely have devastating consequences for the pork export market.