One of the transmission paths of African swine flu is through virus-contaminated food waste. In response to the case of illegal smuggling of food tested positive of African swine flu uncovered in August this year, all environmental agencies across the country complied with the policy of the Council of Agriculture (COA) to suspend the use of food waste as pigswill from 1 to 30 September, and carried out 626 inspections during this period on the 676 pig farms that had obtained food waste reuse permits in the 13 counties and cities (New Taipei City, Taoyuan City, Hsinchu City, Hsinchu County, Miaoli County, Taichung City, Changhua County, Nantou County, Chiayi City, Chiayi County, Tainan City, Kaohsiung City, Yilan County) that allowed to use food waste as pigswill. None of pig farms was found to have used food waste as pigswill in an illegal way.
The EPA noted that according to the COA’s announcement on 29 September 2021, livestock farms that have more than 200 heads of livestock, as specified in their farm registrations, and that have been approved for the reuse of food waste by the environmental competent authorities of the special municipalities, counties or cities in accordance with the Waste Disposal Act, may resume the use of food waste as pigswill after 1 October 2021. However, they must do so in a way compliant to the regulations concerning high-temperature cooking: stirring shall be continuous during high-temperature cooking, the core temperature shall be kept above 90℃, and cooking shall last at least one hour. The EPA demanded all local environmental agencies to complete the guidance for and inspections on the 676 pig farms that use food waste as pigswill across the country before 7 October. It was to ensure the pig farms permitted to use food waste as pigswill comply with the high-temperature cooking procedure to prevent the spread of the disease. If a pig farm was found to have failed to cook food waste at high temperatures in accordance with the regulations, it would be reported and punished in accordance with the Waste Disposal Act. If pig farms with less than 200 head of livestock were found to use food waste as pigswill, they would be reported to agricultural authorities and punished in accordance with the Statute for Prevention and Control of Infectious Animal Diseases and the Feed Control Act.
Excerpt from Major Environmental Policies, October 2021
- Ministry of Environment