Kenya on Wednesday launched a purified oil-based vaccine against foot-and-mouth disease that aims to boost livestock immunity for longer period of time.

Kenya Veterinary Vaccines Production Institute (KEVEVAPI) Acting CEO Jane Wachira told a media briefing in Nairobi that the vaccine will replace the water-based vaccine currently available in the market.

“The vaccine will help Kenya to become a livestock disease free zone because it increases livestock immunity to one year from the current four months when farmers use existing vaccines,” Wachira said.

Foot-and-mouth is a livestock disease that infects cows, sheep, goats and pigs, posing a serious threat to Kenya’s livestock sector even though it does not kill infected animals.

“It reduces the weight of the animals and therefore leads to lower milk production in the case of dairy cattle or lower meat production in the case of beef, pigs, goats and sheep,” Wachira said.

KEVEVAPI said that once oil-based vaccine is widely available it will to boost the country’s livestock embryo-transfer industry. The East African nation has set a target of controlling the disease by 2024.

Wachira said that the vaccine is likely to increase output of the livestock sector as animals will only have to be assembled once a year to be administered with vaccine. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/NewsGhana.com.gh

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