Philippine Daily Inquirer

3,000 PIGS CULLED IN CAVITE FARMS AS GOVERNOR ORDERS ‘LOCKDOWN’

- —MARICAR CINCO WITH A REPORT FROM INQUIRER RESEARCH

About 3,000 pigs in Cavite province were culled as part of the government’s “depopulati­on” of hog farms within areas affected by the African swine fever (ASF).

The pigs were within the 1kilometer radius of the affected farms, specifical­ly in Barangay Emmanuel Bergado 1 in Dasmariñas City, Arnel de Mesa, Department of Agricultur­e (DA) regional director in Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon), said on Wednesday.

So far, De Mesa said no new cases of suspected African swine fever were monitored in Cavite, after 31 pigs died of infection from the virus early this month.

Cavite is the latest province in Calabarzon region hit by the disease, prompting its governor, Juanito Victor Remulla, to issue an executive order enforcing a “lockdown” on live hogs and pork products to prevent the spread of the virus.

De Mesa said Cavite’s lockdown order meant a ban both on those “coming in and going out” of the province.

He said that although African swine fever could not be passed on to humans, the DA was not recommendi­ng consumptio­n of meat of infected pigs, citing the Food Safety Act.

The Department of Agricultur­e (DA) confirmed the presence of African swine fever in the country in September. But a month before that, Bohol had already banned the importatio­n of pigs and pork products to keep the disease out of the province.

Cebu also banned the entry of pork, live pigs and other products derived from pork for 100 days in the same month as agricultur­e officials awaited results of tests to confirm if hog deaths in some areas of the country were related to the disease.

The Philippine­s, the world’s 10th-largest pork consumer and seventh-biggest pork importer, declared its first outbreak of the disease on Sept. 9.

Negros Occidental approved a 90-day ban on the entry of pork products from areas outside of the province. Cebu then imposed a ban on all pork products from Luzon due to African swine fever infestatio­n.

Occidental Mindoro declared a ban on live hogs and other pork products entering the province, but Gov. Eduardo Gadiano said shutting its doors would only be temporary.

Other local government­s that banned pork from Luzon and other areas include Negros Oriental, Bohol, Siquijor, Davao City, Tacloban City, Misamis Oriental and the cities of Iligan and Mati.

In Luzon, local government­s that ban the entry of pork from other areas include Benguet, Isabela, Quirino and Nueva Vizcaya.

After confirmed cases of the swine disease were detected in two barangays in Cavite, it imposed a “lockdown” to contain the disease.

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