Biosecurity, as defined by FAO, is a comprehensive approach that analyzes and manages risks to human, animal, plant life and health, and environment. Strengthening biosecurity measures is a key thematic component of the FAO's One Health priority programme area, which seeks to safeguard agricultural production and mitigate detrimental effects on ecosystems.

FAO has pioneered the progressive management pathway (PMP) approach to assist countries, industries and producers to gradually implement improved and sustainable levels of risk management. Now, a PMP for terrestrial animal biosecurity (FAO-PMP-TAB) is being implemented to strengthen biosecurity in terrestrial animal production and associated value chains.

The FAO-PMP-TAB is a collaborative and stepwise approach to assessing and managing biological risks at enterprise, community and national levels. Developed and implemented through public-private partnership and dialogue between stakeholders, including producers, governments, and other value chain actors, it will include planning of policies, laws, regulations, institutional framework, guidelines and field interventions.

With the FAO-PMP-TAB being piloted in Tanzania, Ghana and Guinea, FAO Tanzania hosted a stakeholders' workshop in Mbeya, Tanzania from 2-5 May 2023 where the scope of implementation of the FAO-PMP-TAB in the pig sector was defined. During the workshop, a comprehensive assessment of the application of biosecurity in the pig sector in the country was carried out using a participatory approach where all stakeholders engaged in discussion.

For Tanzania, the pig sector has been identified as a priority area of work for the FAO-PMP-TAB pilot initiatives, given the context of annual African swine fever (ASF) outbreaks experienced in the country. Without licensed vaccines or therapeutics, the impact of ASF can only be minimised through the adoption of good biosecurity practices.

The results of this assessment led to the development of a comprehensive list of short-term key action points, which will contribute towards the implementation of the National ASF Control Strategy for the United Republic of Tanzania (2020-2025) by outlining the operational objectives for the pilot phase of the next two years with the support of FAO. Through implementation of the action points, biosecurity measures will be fortified to combat the devastating impacts of this deadly disease affecting national pig farming.