DA imposes temporary ban on hog products from Jiangsu, China

By Czeriza Valencia, The Philippine Star

Posted at Aug 05 2014 07:44 AM | Updated as of Aug 05 2014 03:44 PM

MANILA - Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala has imposed a temporary ban on the importation of hog products from Jiangsu, China following a confirmed report of an outbreak of foot and mouth disease (FMD) in Zhoutang village in Yingtan.

Through a memorandum order dated July 11, Alcala directed the immediate suspension of the processing and issuance of import permits for hog products from Jiangsu, China.

DA veterinary quarantine officers/inspectors in all major ports were also directed to stop the entry of animals and their products from Jiangsu, China.

Alcala said the restriction is a proactive measure to protect the health of the local livestock population which remains free from FMD.

Dr. Zhang Zhonqui of the China Animal Disease Control Center reported that the FMD virus infected a piggery farm of Lianghong Company in Jiangsu.

Bureau of AnimaI Industry (BAI) assistant director Dr. Simeon Amurao said all frozen meat and live animals susceptible to FMD from China would be confiscated for immediate disposal or destruction once apprehended in major ports.

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Amurao said the import ban would stay for a while after the outbreak has been controlled.

The Philippines is the only FMD-free country in Southeast Asia.

Alcala earlier rallied the local hog producers to take advantage of the country’s disease-free status to tap export opportunities within Southeast Asia especially when free trade is implemented in the region in 2015.