In this file:
· Tarlac solon wary of pork smuggling as ASF woes persist
· Easing public worry on ASF
Tarlac solon wary of pork smuggling as ASF woes persist
By Ellson Quismorio, Manila Bulletin (Philippines)
November 1, 2019
The Department of Agriculture (DA) must clamp down on the smuggling of hog meat in order to abate the spread of the African Swine Fever (ASF) in the country, a ranking House of Representatives member said Friday.
“As long as there are no clear rules, people will smuggle locally [and] internationally,” said Tarlac 2nd district Rep. Victor Yap, chairman of the House Information and Communications Technology Committee.
“The DA has to adopt a better protocol of control for sanitation, for transport, and domestic sales,” he said.
“The small ones (sell) will pass through minor and back roads, sell inconspicuously and endanger farms in the places [they traverse], explained Yap, adding that such set up “is killing the industry.”
As of two weeks ago, the DA said over 52,000 pigs have been culled in response to the ASF outbreak.The provinces hardest hit by the virus have been Bulacan and Pangasinan.
Although Tarlac has is so far ASF-free, Yap expressed worries that this may change if proper action isn’t taken by authorities.
“In Tarlac they’ve adopted a superior one (protocol). Yet the outbreak to other areas such as Tarlac will only be a matter of time, they say.”
Yap further said that the local government units cannot dictate rules and protocols in the place of the DA, especially if the rules they are implementing aren’t tried and tested...
Easing public worry on ASF
Editorial, Philippine Daily Inquirer
November 01, 2019
The African swine fever (ASF) virus does not pose a health risk to people who consume pork. That important point needs to be reiterated, as the Department of Health has done so many times, because the unnecessary panic that has gripped the public over the last few months is adversely affecting the local swine sector. The country’s hog-raising industry, which is valued at P200 billion, has been losing P1 billion, or about $20 million a month, since the Department of Agriculture confirmed the first ASF outbreak on July 25.
More than 62,000 pigs have died due to the disease or been culled since the outbreak, as the infection has spread to Rizal, Bulacan, Pampanga, Pangasinan, Nueva Ecija and Cavite provinces, and Quezon City in Metro Manila, according to the Oct. 24 ASF bulletin of the Food and Agriculture Organization. That body blow to the industry was compounded by news last week that processed meat products such as hot dog, longganisa and tocino seized at a Mindoro port tested positive for the disease.
Agriculture Secretary William Dar has ordered the strict implementation of the 1-7-10 protocol: culling all hogs within a 1-kilometer radius of the affected areas, while limiting the movement of pork and pork products within 7 km, and conducting surveillance and monitoring within a 10-km radius. To further contain the outbreak, the government has also appealed to hog raisers and traders to stop the sale of ASF-infected pigs and processed products, and has urged the public to buy only from market vendors and meat shops with National Meat Inspection Services certificates. While pork with ASF poses no health threat to consumers, food remains containing such, when fed to hogs, may infect the entire pig population in a farm, devastating livelihoods and businesses.
The Philippine Association of Meat Processors Inc. (Pampi), meanwhile, has declared that it will stop the purchase of local pork to contain the spread of ASF, until local hog producers can assure the government that their products have not been infected. The move has been met with criticism...