China's pig cull topped 20,000 animals on Wednesday as officials try to halt an outbreak of deadly African swine fever (ASF) in the world's largest pig market, already reeling from a year-long price rout.
Nearly 15,000 hogs had been culled in Lianyungang, East China's Jiangsu Province as of August 20, local authorities said, after the third case of the highly contagious disease was found at the weekend. It is the third case in two weeks.
China's first reported outbreaks of ASF - a disease for which there is no vaccine - have stoked concerns about its spread and potential damage to demand for pork, a staple of the nation's diet.
National hog prices, which had been recovering from four-year lows that struck in May, hit a three-week low at 13.71 yuan ($1.99) a kilogram on Wednesday and are down 7.2 percent year-on year, according to consultancy China-America Commodity Data Analytics.
The price fall has added to financial pain for farmers who have been left struggling after a rapid expansion of capacity led to oversupply and sinking prices.