(Yicai Global) Dec. 4 -- China's agriculture ministry has found more instances of African swine fever in Beijing, adding to the more than 70 cases already found across the country since August.
In the latest case, some 85 of 9,835 hogs were infected and 17 died in the capital's Tongzhou district, Beijing Business Daily reported, citing the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs. Other infected pigs were also found in Xi'an, Shaanxi province and at a wild boar farm up north in Heilongjiang.
It is the second discovery of the epidemic in Beijing over the past few weeks, after two farms in Fangshan district were found to be infected on Nov. 23. Other cases have been found in Tianjin, Jiangxi, Hubei, Inner Mongolia and other cities during the same period, data on the ministry's website shows. Nearly 20 regions have been affected since the first outbreak earlier this year.
The speed at which the virus is spreading should slow down, according to Li Guoxiang, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, which should prevent the price of pork falling further and stop more farms from closing their doors.
Authorities believe long-distance transport of live pigs is one of the main reasons the disease is travelling so far and wide. Regulators have been strictly monitoring pig distribution across several provinces since September and the agriculture ministry rolled out several transport bans in November, preventing pigs from leaving affected areas.
Editor: James Boynton