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    Ministry of National Food Security and Research receives seed virus, cell line and serum from French Agricultural Research Centre

    Ministry of National Food Security and Research receives seed virus, cell line and serum from French Agricultural Research Centre

    Chitral Times Report

    ISLAMABAD: Ministry of National Food Security and Research has received seed virus, cell line and serum from French Agriculture Research Centre for International Development (CIRAD) France. CIRAD is WOAH/FAO Reference Laboratory for Peste des Petits Ruminants (PPR). This seed virus shall be used for production of PPR vaccine of international quality in Pakistan. The FAO Representative in Pakistan, Mr. Farrukh Toirove, Deputy FAOR handed over the seed package worth of Euro 25000 to the Ministry of National Food Security and Research on Friday. Syed Khalid Gardezi, Additional Secretary thanked the FAO for supply of this seed virus and appreciated the continued support of FAO to strengthen the Animal Husbandry Commissioner’s office and National Veterinary Laboratories (NVL) and provincial livestock departments. PPR (Peste des Petits Ruminants), also known as sheep and goat plague, has been a pervasive threat to global livestock populations, causing significant economic losses and affecting the livelihoods of millions of farmers.

    This is one of the trade restrictive diseases of animals. FAO and the World Organization for Animal Health (WOAH) has jointly launched a global program for eradication of PPRby 2030. Pakistan has set its target of eradication of PPR by 2028 The immediate benefit of this seed virus is local production of quality PPR vaccine in adequate quantity while saving the precious foreign exchange being incurred on import of PPR vaccine.

    The ultimate and long-term benefits will include the zero incidence of PPR disease resulting in turn, the net saving of Rs 60 billion beingincurred as loss due to PPR disease every year in Pakistan and increasing the livelihood of the livestock farmers. The availability of this seed virus will ensure production of PPR vaccine in the country by all provinces. The professional teams involved in the production of PPR vaccine from the provinces shall also be trained by CIRAD experts to improve their skills and expertise in vaccine production, storage of seed and cell lines etc. Immediate training for handling the seed and cell line shall also be imparted by NVL, Islamabad under PSDP project titled “National PPR Control and eradication Program”.

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