No processed pork goods price hike amid swine fever scare – DA
MANILA, Philippines – Department of Agriculture Undersecretary Ariel Cayanan on Wednesday underscored there should be no increase in the prices of processed pork products amid the ban on products sourced from countries possibly affected by the African Swine Fever virus.
“That’s something we really have to look out also, dapat wala. Hindi dapat,” Cayanan said during the weekly economic briefing at Malacanang when asked if the public should brace for a possible price increase.
Cayanan said the hog sector in the country had assured the government that it can meet the local demand in the country despite the mandated pullout of the affected products.
“The secretary wants to know if we are secure with our local supply and [they guaranteed] naman po ng hog sector na they can, they will be able to supply the local demand,” Cayanan said.
On Tuesday, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an order expanding the September 2018 temporary ban on the importation, distribution, and sale of processed pork meat products sourced from countries believed to be affected by the virus.
From seven countries, the ban now covers 16 countries – China, Hungary, Latvia, Poland, Romania, Russia, Ukraine, Vietnam, Zambia, South Africa, Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Mongolia, Moldova and Belgium
Cayanan said biosecurity measures are being imposed to ensure that the virus will not reach the country.
“Our pronouncement is that itong African Swine Fever, based on our veterinary expert, affects the hogs, the swine, and it caused very great danger kaya ang pinoprotektahan muna natin ay ang hog sector pero syempre anything na may disease, para sa tao, yan ay pinagkakatiwala natin sa Department of Health,” Cayanan said.
“It Is not only challenging but it is already alarming considering na yung effect nito sa mga baboy ay mabilis po, talagang kapag naapektuhan magma-manifest sa itsura niya, mabilis ang pagkamatay. Kaya nagkonsulta ang ating kalihim sa mga hog sector and this will be a part of our biosecurity measures that we will be releasing,” he added.
Asked why the products were still available in supermarkets despite the ban being released as early as September 2018, Cayanan said the FDA is the best agency to answer the question.
“Ang nage-enforce dun sa mga pinag-uusapan rating process ay FDA. I want to give the courtesy to FDA to answer it. But if you will be asking my opinion, ito yung oportunidad para masagot kung bakit,” Cayanan said. (Editor: Gilbert S. Gaviola)
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