Philippines making progress on swine fever vaccine trials, president says

ASF a major concern in Philippines
calendar icon 7 July 2023
clock icon 2 minute read

Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr said on Wednesday initial local trials for an African swine fever vaccine had showed promising results, raising hopes that it will soon be available in the country to combat the deadly animal disease, Reuters reported.

A number of vaccines have been tested worldwide as authorities rush to stop the spread of the highly contagious disease that ravages pig farms and the $250 billion global pork industry regularly. One vaccine candidate is close to approval in Vietnam.

Marcos, who also heads the agriculture ministry, said preliminary clinical trials showed the vaccine produced sufficient antibodies and was safe to use so far, but needed further testing.

In the Philippines, African swine fever remains a major concern for hog raisers as millions of pigs have already been culled since the first local outbreak was detected in 2019.

Since then, 66 out of the country's 81 provinces have experienced outbreaks. As of last month, there were active cases in 13 provinces, according to the Department of Agriculture.

The resulting reduced domestic pork supply has prompted the Philippines to ramp up meat imports as local prices shot up, adding pressure on inflation that remains outside the central bank's target range.

Marcos, in a speech at a livestock trade event, said a second phase of the vaccine trial was underway but warned against complacency.

"It is not a reason for complacency, as we are being continuously warned by those who have studied the vaccine," he said.

The Philippines has also made progress in the procurement of avian influenza vaccines, having called on manufacturers to register their products with the Food and Drug Administration, he added.

© 2000 - 2024 - Global Ag Media. All Rights Reserved | No part of this site may be reproduced without permission.