Millions Fed: Proven Successes in Agricultural Development

Conquering the Cattle Plague

The global effort to eradicate rinderpest

Peter Roeder and Karl Rich

Key period: 1950–2001

Geographic region: Global

The intervention: Concerted effort by national veterinary services in both industrialized and developing countries, aided by international organizations, has brought the once dreaded rinderpest livestock virus to the point of extinction. Control programs in the last 20 years have contributed significantly to the eradication of rinderpest, using vaccine innovations and new epidemiological and surveillance tools based on participatory techniques. These programs have protected some 40 million poor livestock keepers from experiencing major losses in milk, meat, and hide production, as well as losses of household incomes and assets. The fact that the virus is no longer circulating in domesticated or wild animals anywhere in the world is a remarkable achievement, on a par with the eradication of smallpox in the human population—the only other case of global eradication of an infectious disease.

Book Chapter:
Conquering the Cattle Plague: The global effort to eradicate rinderpest**
Peter Roeder and Karl Rich
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Discussion Paper:
The global effort to eradicate rinderpest
Roeder, Peter; Rich, Karl. 2009. IFPRI Discussion Paper 923.
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