Spring Genetics commits to biosecurity and health surveillance
The company operates a bio-secure closed breeding nucleus to which no external fish have been introduced since 2009, and have been screening against TiLV for the past 3 years without findings detected.
The USDA APHIS released a statement outlining that tilapia lake virus (TiLV) had been reported in Idaho, USA, in a facility over 4,500 km away from Spring® Genetics. This finding was controlled appropriately by the authorities, and the correct measures were taken to avoid losing containment on the outbreak.
"This TiLV outbreak highlights the importance of biosecurity and health surveillance programs. It is important for producers to source fingerlings and broodstock from known and trusted sources that have the proper documentation ensuring that their fish are in healthy condition," said Hideyoshi Segovia-Uno, commercial and operation manager.
Since its creation in 2009, Spring® Genetics, part of Benchmark plc, operates a bio-secure closed breeding nucleus to which no external fish have been introduced since 2009, and have been screening against TiLV for the past 3 years without findings detected. Screening against TiLV virus is included in the program as a standard practice. TiLV is an RNA virus that was previously detected in Asia, Africa, Central and South America, and there is no current treatment or vaccine available.
The company undergoes a stringent health surveillance program that screens for known pathogens that cause diseases in tilapia, as well as, screening against pathogens that may cause disease and affect tilapia production. The surveillance program randomly tests several batches of fish from the nucleus operation, on a quarterly basis, against pathogens such tilapia lake virus (TilV), infectious salmon anaemia virus (ISAV), infectious pancreatic necrosis virus (IPNV), Francisella, Streptococcus, Aeromonas, Edwarsiella, etc. amongst other key pathogens. In addition to this, testing is done in every single batch of fish that is being shipped to a client, the testing to these batches is specific to the requirements the importer country demands.
Spring® Genetics subjects itself to the strictest testing possible to protect their clients, OIE testing for all tilapia diseases are completed a minimum of four times per year, and the program is in place to ensure that we can continue being a trusted source of broodstock and sex reversed fingerlings for the industry. The biosecurity measures and protocols implemented at the breeding nucleus are top level in aquaculture and leading grade for the tilapia industry.
Spring® Genetics is governed by the Florida Department of Aquaculture and has been a permit holder since 2009. Additionally, the company is approved by the USDA-APHIS-Veterinary Services as an aquaculture export facility for Oreochromis niloticus (Tilapia).