Cebu province imposes total ban vs hogs, pork products from Luzon
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia has ordered a “total ban” on pork and pork products coming from Luzon.
Garcia made the announcement during her press conference this morning, September 18.
The governor said that the total ban was agreed upon during an emergency meeting which she called with members of the African Swine Fever (ASF) task force Tuesday night, September 17.
“We agreed that there would be now a total ban not just of live hogs from Luzon but all frozen and processed pork and pork related products from Luzon,” said Garcia.
The governor said that the total ban will take effect today and will continue “until further notice.”
The cities of Mandaue and Cebu already ordered a total ban on port and pork products sourced from Luzon provinces.
“But they can only impose that (the ban) in their own territorial jurisdiction. This (province-wide the total ban) is now in support of the total ban of the cities of Cebu and Mandaue because the entry of these products that they ban is in the provinces, specifically the seaports,” Garcia said.
Garcia said the task force is also planning to meet with traders to properly explain to them the purpose of the prohibition and to solicit their cooperation in the implementation of the province-wide ban.
As this developed, Garcia also warned the management of hotels who continue to ignore their request for an inventory of their existing supplies for pork and pork products. The task force first raised the request for an inventory shortly after its creation last month.
The inventory was called to determine if Cebu hotels have existing supplies that were sourced from 21 countries with confirmed ASF cases.
So far, Garcia said that only three hotels submitted their inventory to the Cebu Provincial Veterinary Office. The Hotels, Resorts and Restaurants Association of Cebu (HRRAC) has more than 100 members.
“Yes, we are instituting very very strict measures because we cannot be too careful as far as the ASF virus is concerned,” Garcia said.
Dr. Mary Rose Vincoy, Provincial Veterinarian and Task Force Chief, said that there will be no let up in their efforts to strengthen security at the borders of Cebu against ASF in order to protect the province’s P10.9 billion hog industry.
Garcia said that a possible ASF infection will not only endanger the province’s hog industry but also its tourism industry. | dcb
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