Cotabato town ‘red zone’ for swine fever | Inquirer News

Cotabato town ‘red zone’ for swine fever

/ 05:00 AM January 08, 2022

ENDANGERED Hogs in one of the piggeries in Mlang, Cotabato, face the danger of getting contaminated after the African swine fever spread to 10 villages of the town. —WILLAMOR A. MAGBANUA

KIDAPAWAN CITY—The Department of Agriculture has declared Mlang town in Cotabato province as a “red zone” after the African swine fever (ASF) spread to 10 of its 37 villages.Acting agriculturist Arlene Encarnacion said recent tests confirmed the presence of the swine disease in the villages of New Antique, New Lawaan, Dalipe, Katipunan, Lika, Inas, Dugong, Magalion, Langkong and New Rizal.

“The number of affected villages might increase since there are blood samples taken from other areas, the results of which are still pending,” Encarnacion added.


Close monitoring

The municipal agriculture office has depopulated at least 2,044 hogs that come from 430 hog raisers, valued at some P7 million, as of Dec. 23 last year. The ASF was first detected in New Antique and New Lawaan in the first week of November.


Encarnacion attributed the spread of the swine disease to the poor observance of biosecurity protocols by piggery owners as well as the smuggling out of meat from ASF-infected hogs by backyard raisers and traders.

Mayor Russel Abonado has cautioned village officials to do their part in containing the spread of ASF in order to protect the livelihood of many households in the town.

Abonado also ordered close monitoring of the meat traded in the town to ensure that contaminated meat did not end up in the market.

Despite the ASF outbreak, pork prices in the town have remained stable at P250 to P280 per kilogram as of Friday. —WILLIAMOR A. MAGBANUA

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TAGS: Cotabato, Pork, swine fever

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