China stops pork export

China has suspended all pork exports from Ziyang and Neijiang cities in Sichuan province where a mystery disease has killed 19 farmers and left 61 others ill.

Pork products from the cities of Ziyang and Neijiang in Sichuan province were suspended as a precautionary measure, the Hong Kong Health Department said in a statement late Monday, Bloomberg reports.

In Hong Kong, which imports 30,000 metric tons of frozen pork from Sichuan province annually, officials insisted there was no need to ban pork imports from other Chinese cities and that inspection procedures were sufficient, Forbes informs.

Initial tests in China suggest the illness is streptococcus suis, which farmers and butchers probably contracted through open wounds during the slaughter or handling of infected pigs. Symptoms include acute fever, headaches and dizziness, according to China's health ministry. The more serious cases can cause meningitis and send a patient into a coma, it said.

Despite the mysterious nature of the disease, the World Health Organization (WHO) said there is no sign of a massive outbreak and that there does not seem to be any human-to-human transmission.

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