THE Department of Agriculture (DA) is set to ban pork imports from Japan due to the discovery there of African Swine Fever (ASF), Secretary Emmanuel F. Piñol said on Sunday.
“At 12 noon today (Sunday), I alerted the Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) through Undersecretary for Policy and Planning Segfredo Serrano to immediately impose a ban on the entry of pork and other pork products from Japan following reports of its spread in that country,” Mr. Piñol said in a social media post.
Japan News reported that ASF was found in four separate cases in Japan on Jan. 12 and Jan. 16. The report also indicated that seven cases have been confirmed in Japan from October and January involving pork inspected at domestic airports.
“A written formal directive will be issued shortly on the imposition of the temporary ban against the entry of pork and pork products from Japan which will be in effect while our quarantine officials are validating the reports with the OIE or the World Animal Health Organization,” Mr. Piñol said.
“In view of this, all quarantine officers in ports of entry all over the country are directed to implement this directive immediately. The quarantine officers are also advised to review their quarantine protocols including the foot baths installed at the ports of entry and the monitoring of all meat products being brought into the country by tourists,” Mr. Piñol added.
Other countries banned from exporting pork and pork products to the Philippines are China, Hungary, Belgium, Latvia, Poland, Romania, Russia, Ukraine, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Moldova, South Africa, and Zambia. — Reicelene Joy N. Ignacio