Governor Dennis Pineda, ordered a temporary ban on the entry of pigs into Pampanga from other areas in Luzon to ensure that the province would not be affected by African Swine Fever (ASF).
Pineda, in issuing Executive Order (EO) No. 34, said the move is to protect the multi-million hog industry and meat processors from the threat of the ASF and to safeguard public health.
“Gusto po nating tiyakin na hindi makakapasok sa atin ang ASF at sigurado na hindi madidisgrasya ang kabuhayan at kalusugan ng mga taga-Pampanga (We want to ensure that no ASF will enter in our province that could affect the livelihood and health of the Kapampangans),” the governor said.
The order was imposed although there had been no ASF outbreak in the province.
“Mananatili po ang mga checkpoints na inilagay ng ating kapulisan sa mga boundaries ng probinsya para pigilin ang pagpasok ng mga baboy galing sa ibang probinsya lalo na sa mga areas kung saan kumpirmado ang ASF (The checkpoints will remain in the boundaries of the province that were put up by our police to prevent the entry of pigs especially from areas with confirmed ASF cases),” he added.
EO 34 stated that the ban is temporary and will be lifted based on the advice of the Bureau of Animal Industry.
“With respect to pork and pork-related products, only those with National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS) seal or with appropriate Certificate of Meat Inspection issued by NMIS shall be allowed entry into the province, with the exception of those coming from ASF affected area,” the order further stated.
Through EO 34, Pineda also created the Pampanga ASF Task Force, which he tasked to make a contingency plan.
The task force is chaired by Dr. Augusto Baluyut, the provincial veterinarian, and Board Member Jun Canlas, head of Sangguniang Panlalawigan on Agriculture Committee.
Two weeks ago, the governor issued a memorandum to mayors to take preventive actions against ASF as advised by the Department of Agriculture through Administrator Order No. 04-2019 on food safety measures and veterinary quarantine.
The Department of Agriculture (DA) has confirmed that laboratory tests validated ASF in several samples taken from Rizal and Bulacan, prompting the culling of hogs there.
Meanwhile, data from the Philippine Statistics Authority showed that swine inventory in Pampanga totaled 51,415 metric tons (MT) in live weight in 2018, making it the third highest producer in Central Luzon after Bulacan (259,677 MT) and Tarlac (98,591 MT). (PNA)
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