South Korea to set up foot-&-mouth vaccine plant

South Korea to set up foot-&-mouth vaccine plant

In a bid to combat frequent outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease, South Korea is mulling a plan to set up a manufacturing facility to locally develop a vaccine to cure animals hit by the viral infection.

South Korea currently relies on imported vaccines from foreign manufacturers like Merial to repeatedly inoculate its farm animals and to bolster inventories during foot-and-mouth outbreaks.

Vice agriculture minister Lee Junwon said the fourth-largest economy of Asia has plans to set up the foot-and-mouth vaccine production plant in 2020.

Making the announcement, Junwon said, “After securing original vaccine production technology by 2017 based on our six-year research result... we plan to operate a foot-and-mouth vaccine plant in 2020.”

For the time being, the Asian country has plans to import 32 million doses to tackle the most recent foot-and-mouth outbreak, in which nine cases of the viral disease have already been confirmed.

The latest outbreak forced authorities to cull more than 1,400 cattle to prevent the viral animal infection from spreading and hitting more animals.

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