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Preventing and controlling African swine fever

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Preventing and controlling African swine fever



Directive 2002/60/EC — specific rules for the control of African swine fever


African swine fever is a generally fatal infectious disease in pigs, with serious socio-economic and public health consequences. The directive sets out prevention, control and eradication measures.


  • European Union (EU) countries must ensure that any suspected case of African swine fever is immediately notified to its national authorities. If confirmed, the results of investigations must be communicated to the European Commission and other EU countries. Diagnosis must be made by approved laboratories using the official diagnostic manual.
  • If the presence of the disease cannot be ruled out, the holding must be placed under surveillance and all movements of pigs, pig products, materials or waste likely to spread the disease restricted. The movement of unauthorised persons and vehicles to and from the holding is banned.
  • If the disease is officially confirmed, all pigs on the holding are to be killed and their carcasses processed. Any meat, materials or waste that might be contaminated must be destroyed, processed or treated to ensure the virus is destroyed. Exceptions may be granted for completely separate healthy production units within infected holdings. A minimum 3 km protection zone within a 10 km surveillance zone must be set up around the site.
  • Where the disease occurs in a slaughterhouse or in transit, all susceptible pigs must be killed and all materials processed. Premises, vehicles and equipment that might be contaminated must be cleaned and disinfected.
  • If wild boar are suspected of being infected, EU countries must inform pig-owners and hunters, and investigate any boar shot or found dead. The infected area must be defined, with holdings in this area placed under surveillance, and a possible hunting ban put in place.
  • Document SANCO/7138/2013 contains guidelines on surveillance and control of African swine fever in wild boar.
  • EU countries must submit a disease eradication plan to the Commission and report on progress every 6 months.
  • At present, the use of African swine fever vaccines is prohibited. However, this could be updated in the future to take account of developments in scientific and technical research.
  • EU countries must draw up contingency plans, taking into account local factors, such as pig density, which are likely to influence the spread of the virus.
  • Commission experts may make spot checks to ensure uniform application of this directive.


This directive will be repealed by Regulation (EU) 2016/429 from 21 April 2021.


It has applied since 9 August 2002. EU countries had to incorporate it into national law by 1 July 2003.


For more information, see:


Council Directive 2002/60/EC of 27 June 2002 laying down specific provisions for the control of African swine fever and amending Directive 92/119/EEC as regards Teschen disease and African swine fever (OJ L 192, 20.7.2002, pp. 27–46)

Successive amendments to Directive 2002/60/EC have been incorporated into the basic text. This consolidated version is of documentary value only.


Commission Decision 2003/422/EC of 26 May 2003 approving an African swine fever diagnostic manual (notified under number C(2003) 1696) (OJ L 143, 11.6.2003, pp. 35–49)

Regulation (EU) 2016/429 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 9 March 2016 on transmissible animal diseases and amending and repealing certain acts in the area of animal health (‘Animal Health Law’) (OJ L 84, 31.3.2016, pp. 1–208)

last update 20.10.2016