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Health Ministry Warns Against Philippine Pork

by 5m Editor
31 December 2008, at 8:31am

BRUNEI - Brunei's Ministry of Health and Agriculture Department, Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources have reported that the number of pigs carrying the Ebola-Reston virus in the Philippines have been increasing and has issued a precaution to the public.

Borneo Bulletin reports that in a press release by the Health Ministry, it cited reports from the International Food Safety Authorities Network (INFOSAN) and the World Health Organisation (WHO), that the Philippines Veterinary Services have reported to the Food and Agriculture Organisation, the World Organisation for Animal Health and WHO, that a rise on the Ebola-Reston virus has been detected in pigs in the Philippines.

There has also recently been an increase of pigs, in a number of farms in three provinces in the Philippines, carrying the Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS), with deaths reported in recent months due to the Ebola-Reston virus.

An official notification was made and released earlier by the World Organisation for Animal Health, but to date, there have been no known human infections from the virus.

The Department of Agriculture confirms that Brunei does not import raw pork, frozen or chilled from the Philippines. However, processed pork products are currently being imported into the country in small numbers, according to importation records from the Food Quality and Safety Control Section, Environmental Sanitation Health Section, Ministry of Health.

As a precaution, the Ministry of Health and Department of Agriculture has stated that it would assist and ensure that raw meat and processed pork products from the Philippines will not be sold in the market or imported to Brunei for the mean time.

They have also advised importers and businesses to remove all pork products dating back six months from the market and to submit them to the Food Quality and Safety Control Section or any health office nationwide to be destroyed.

Consumers in possession of raw pork, frozen or chilled, from the Philippines are also requested to surrender them to the Animal Quarantine Unit, Department of Agriculture of any agriculture department nationwide, whilst those in possession of processed pork are to return them to their place of purchase or to the Food Quality and Safety Control Section or to any health office.