Philippine authorities threaten legal action against hog traders

The Philippines' Department of Agriculture has threatened legal action against hog traders ignoring strict animal quarantine rules as it confirms new cases of African swine fever infections in metropolitan Manila and a northern province.
calendar icon 1 October 2019
clock icon 3 minute read

At least 20,000 pigs have so far been culled or have died because of the disease in the Philippines since last month, a small fraction of the nation's swine herd that was estimated at 12.7 million heads as of 1 July.

The Philippines, the world's 10th-largest pork consumer and seventh-biggest pork importer, declared its first outbreak of the disease on 9 September.

Agriculture officials suspect the virus was brought to local farms via food scraps, or swill, from hotels and restaurants fed to pigs, mixed with contaminated imported pork products.

To protect their hog-raising businesses, several provinces in central and southern Philippines have imposed a ban on the entry of pork and pork-based products from the disease-hit areas, including metropolitan Manila.

"We have now asked the local government units to further strengthen their checkpoints," Dar said, to make sure undocumented hogs possibly infected with the virus will not be transported to other provinces.

Dar, however, said there is still enough pork supply in the domestic market and that the government is making sure that only pork meat marked safe to eat by the government's National Meat Inspection Service is sold to consumers.

vet inspecting pigs
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