MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered all government agencies to adopt policies and measures to contain the spread of African Swine Fever (ASF) in the country.
In a statement released on Thursday night, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the Office of the President — through the initiative of Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea — directed all executive departments, bureaus, agencies, government-owned and controlled corporations, government financial institutions, and other offices to take action to manage and control the swine disease.
Panelo added that concerned government offices have also been ordered to provide assistance, alternative livelihood and skills training to hog farmers and backyard raisers affected by the ASF.
“Finally, the Office of the President implores the public to extend their utmost cooperation to government authorities in order to prevent the spread of ASF,” he said.
The order was issued after authorities confirmed that some processed meat products were contaminated with the swine fever virus. Some meat products such as tocino, longganisa and hotdog that were seized from Mindoro port reportedly tested positive for the virus.
The swine disease has reportedly affected several hog farms in Luzon, such as in Rizal, Bulacan, Pampanga, Cavite and Quezon City which led to the culling of thousands of pigs to prevent the spread of the disease.
The Department of Agriculture has also been implementing a protocol to control the disease.
The 1-7-10 protocol includes the culling of hogs within one-kilometer radius of infected farms and the setting up of quarantine checkpoints in strategic locations to prevent the movement of all live pigs, pork and pork-related products.
Hog farms, particularly backyard operations, within seven-kilometer radius are subjected to continued surveillance procedures and tests to determine the extent of infection in animals.
Swine farms within a 10-kilometer radius, on the other hand, are required to submit a mandatory report on the disease.