CAMIGUIN ISLAND PROVINCE – The provincial government of Camiguin has imposed a selective pork and pork products ban as the African Swine Fever (ASF) sweeps Luzon.
Camiguin Governor Jurdin Jesus Romualdo said that the province is monitoring all pork products coming into the island as a precaution against the spread of ASF, a highly contagious viral disease that affects pigs, warthogs, and boars, and results in a 100 percent mortality rate of the animals.
The National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS) said the ASF is not considered as a human health threat.
The Department of Agriculture in Region 10 said that it is closely watching all meat products coming in from Luzon.
Cagayan de Oro City and Tagoloan sea ports and the Laguindingan Airport are under close monitoring to prevent pork products from Luzon from coming into the region. Cagayan de Oro and Misamis Oriental have ordered a temporary total pork and pork products ban in September 2019.
The pork industry in the Philippines is worth P250 billion. Region 10, or northern Mindanao, contributes between 9-10 percent, or roughly P25 billion.
“As soon as you step at our port, you pass through a foot bath and we have our provincial veterinary office inspecting the meat and poultry coming in,” Romualdo said.
The selective ban follows the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) order in lifting bans imposed by local government units on processed pork products from Luzon.
Under the selective ban, pork products must have NMIS clearances before it can enter the island, Romualdo said.
Camiguin is among the top 5 most visited province in the country with almost a million tourists visiting the island known for its volcanoes, cold, hot and soda springs, island hopping and diving. Its food supply, both for locals and tourists, are from mainland Mindanao and parts of Luzon and Visayas.
Romualdo added that even if the ASF is non-contagious to humans, the local government is also protecting its local swine growers from being affected.
Meanwhile, the Northern Mindanao Hog Raisers Association (NorMinHog) gave an assurance that locally grown hogs are safe to eat and that ASF has not reached Mindanao yet. – Rappler.com