The Ministry of Rural Affairs has signed a deal with AS Maag Konservitööstus to buy canned pork for the national food reserve. The meat used for the cans will come from zones where African Swine Fever has been detected.
“The aim of the purchase is to stabilize the market of pork from contaminated zones and give producers time to adapt to the new situation in the market,” Rural Affairs Minister Urmas Kruuse said.
He said many pig farms in zone III are finding it difficult to sell pork, despite there being no health concern as checks are more thorough than elsewhere.
First zones are buffer areas for zones labeled II, where swine fever has been detected in wild boar, and zones labeled III, where swine fever has also been found in farm animals.
The initial contract will be for six weeks, with Maad Konservitööstus buying up pork once per week. The government has set aside 1.78 million euros for the project. All meat used for the cans has been cleared of the African Swine Fever before being sent to slaughter houses.
The state will store the cans until the end of 2016, when it will either sell them or give them to the Defense Forces or as social aid.
Authorities have killed tens of thousands of pigs since the summer, when an outbreak of the diseas hit Estonia.
Editor: J.M. Laats