FDA confiscates P7-M worth of imported meat products

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 18, 2019   •   5019

Courtesy : Dr. Paul Tolentino Floranda

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has reportedly confiscated P7 million worth of imported meat products across the country.

That is equivalent to 16,000 canned products.

The FDA has inspected over 50 establishments to check if they are selling imported meat products that came from countries affected by African swine fever.

Department of Health (DOH) Spokesman Usec. Eric Domingo said they have already recalled several of the meat products.

“Actually mahigit 50 na establishments, groceries at tsaka mga distributors ang nahulihan natin na mayroon nitong mga banned products natin na ito. At sineal na natin ito, Nag- seize na rin tayo at tsaka nag-recall, (We’ve actually caught over 50 establishments, groceries, and distributors selling banned products. We have seized and sealed them already and have recalled some),” he said.

Domingo reiterated that imported pork meat and products are not allowed to enter the country. He also advised Filipinos who will be returning home to not bring any of the banned products.

“Anything from unprocessed na frozen meat halimbawa bawal iyon pero pati mga produkto na na-processed na. Halimbawa iyong mga de lata o kaya mga kakanin or pagkain na containing meat products lalo na kung pork ay talagang hindi natin pinapayagan na makapsok ito, (Anything from unprocessed frozen meat, for example, is banned. It also includes processed products like canned meat or food containing meat products. We ban these from entering the country),” he said.

The DOH spokesperson said the country will continue to have strict implementations on pork products until the African swine fever is resolved abroad.

The FDA provided a list of countries affected by the African swine fever.

  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • China
  • Czech Republic
  • Hungary
  • Lativia
  • Moldova
  • Poland
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • South Africa
  • Ukraine
  • Zambia
  • Mongolia
  • Vietnam
  • Cambodia
  • Hong Kong
  • North Korea  

—AAC (with reports from Aiko Miguel)

BSP grants regulatory relief for banks affected by ASF, COVID-19

Aileen Cerrudo   •   February 27, 2020

BANGKO SENTRAL

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) will grant regulatory relief to banks and quasi banks (QBs) that sustained losses due to their clients being affected by the African Swine Fever (ASF) and the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

“We believe that the grant of regulatory and rediscounting relief measures is also applicable to financial institutions whose clients have suffered from adverse effects of these crises,” BSP Governor Benjamin E. Diokno said.

The temporary regulatory relief includes grace periods for rediscounting loans, staggered booking of allowance for credit losses, non-imposition of penalties on legal reserve deficiencies, and non-recognition of certain defaulted accounts as past due.

Diokno said the BSP recognizes the potentially crippling impact of the said events on key industries, which include the tourism industry.

“The BSP’s initial assessment points to a potential dampening impact on the Philippine economy in the near term mainly through disruptions to tourism and associated services,” he said.

The House of Representatives is already tackling the issue on how to compensate for the tourism losses due to the implemented travel ban prompted by the COVID-19 threat.—AAC

DA Bicol confirms positive cases of African Swine Fever in CamSur

Marje Pelayo   •   February 21, 2020

BICOL, Philippines – Tests on organ samples collected from dead pigs in a barangay in Bombon, Camarines Sur revealed contamination of African Swine Fever (ASF).

Department of Agriculture (DA) Regional Director Rodel Tornilla in a statement on Thursday (February 20) confirmed that swine mortality in Barangay Sto. Domingo in Bombon was caused by the deadly pig virus.

Tornilla assured that the DA and the local government of Bombon are implementing measures to manage, contain and control the pig disease.

The most recent incident of swine mortality due to ASF was reported in Davao Occidental and Davao City.

READ: DA to probe how ASF reached Davao Occidental

BAI warns pork dishes may spread African Swine Fever

Marje Pelayo   •   February 19, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) expressed concern that African Swine Fever (ASF) has already reached even remote barangays in the country.

BAI suspects that the ASF virus that reached Davao Occidental may have been brought through “pasalubongs” of food gifts in the form of processed pork or pork dishes prepared during the holidays last December.

Likewise, food leftovers or swills from these gatherings may have been contaminated by ASF.

Kasama sa mga pasalubong na iyan mga processed na karne na maaring nanggaling doon sa lugar na may African Swine Fever (Among these food gifts may have been processed meat from areas infected by African Swine Fever),” Domingo said.

Siguro iyong mga tira-tirang pagkain ay naipakain sa mga alagang baboy. After several weeks lumitaw na iyong sakit sa mga lugar na hindi natin inaasahan (Leftover foods may have been fed to pigs. After several weeks, the virus emerged in areas we did not expect to be infected),” he added.

Domingo said it would be difficult to detect such food items at checkpoints especially if they were skillfully concealed in bags and containers.

Ang problema natin kapag ang byahero ay inilagay niya sa personal bag niya na maliit iyong karne o kaya sa private vehicle (One problem is when a traveler places the pork dish inside his or her personal bag inside a private vehicle),” Domingo noted.

O kaya ang may dala-dala ng paninda, ang bag, hindi naman pinapara iyan sa mga checkpoint (Or the pork meat were concealed inside a bag, they are not flagged down in checkpoints),” he added.

The official calls on the public to ensure that they are purchasing pork meat and pork-based products with certification from proper authorities such as the National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS) and the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA).

Disinfection efforts, meanwhile, are ongoing on transporting vehicles at BAI checkpoints in the country.

BAI already accounted about 230,000 pigs that were culled and have died due to ASF but only 20% of this was directly infected by ASF. MNP (with details from Rey Pelayo)

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