DA says no outbreak of African swine fever in Philippines
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Agriculture (DA) said Wednesday there is no outbreak of African swine fever in the country, after confirming that there have been incidents of hog mortality in some areas.
In a press briefing, DA Spokesperson Noel Reyes said the DA has yet to identify the real cause of death of the pigs, pending confirmatory laboratory tests.
“Walang outbreak. Kaya ni-limit. Kapag nag-outbreak, hindi na-contain [There is no outbreak. It was limited. When there is an outbreak, it means we were not able to contain it],” he said, explaining that all pigs within the one kilometer radius from the virus’ ground zero were all culled.
He also assured the public that there is enough supply of meat in the market and that the meat being sold is safe to eat.
“We were assured by the private sector na walang karneng nakalabas sa infected areas so ang current supply ng meat ay from other hygienic areas,” he said, adding that the DA is “on top of the situation.”
(We were assured by the private sector that no meat exited the infected areas so the current supply of meat are from other hygienic areas.)
He also advised the public to report any unusual swine mortalities in their communities to the nearest government veterinary offices so that immediate action can be undertaken.
These actions from DA follow reports that some areas in Luzon have recorded suspected cases of African swine fever, or a deadly viral disease affecting hogs alone and does not pose any health concern to humans.
Agriculture Secretary William Dar earlier said he had already ordered the Bureau of Animal Industry to conduct confirmatory laboratory tests and send blood samples of affected pigs to foreign counterparts to identify the cause of the deaths.
He said test results are expected to come in two to three weeks, but said similar tests could take as long as three months. /jpv
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