Lawmaker not convinced pork products safe | Inquirer News

Lawmaker not convinced pork products safe

/ 04:15 AM October 28, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — A lawmaker is not convinced that pork and pork products tainted with African swine fever (ASF) are safe to eat, despite assurances to the contrary by health officials.

“That pork [contaminated with ASF] would not be safe for people to eat because it did not come from a healthy pig,” Rep. Bernadette Herrera-Dy of Bagong Henerasyon party list said in a statement.

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She added, “The illness itself would have weakened the immune systems of the swine. If the pig died before it could be properly slaughtered, then its meat is ‘double dead’ pork.”

Double dead or “botcha” is the term used by Filipinos to refer to carcasses taken from an animal that has died of disease.

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‘Processed meat still safe’

On Friday, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III reiterated his department’s position that swine fever was not a risk to human health, as he sought to allay the public’s fears following reports that a number of pork products had tested positive for the ASF virus.

“We want to emphasize again to the consuming public that ASF is not a threat to human health. Processed meat products are still safe for consumption,” he said in a statement.

But Dy said it was time to focus on unscrupulous pig farmers who were still selling contaminated meat to recover losses.

“What we have here is a situation wherein uncaring and unconscientious hog raisers would rather recover their losses without any regard for public health and safety of other people,” Dy said. —DJ Yap

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TAGS: African swine fever, Bernadette Herrera-Dy
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