Hog raisers warn of swill feeding dangers

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THE practice of feeding hogs leftover food, or swill, poses a heightened risk of foot-and-mouth disease or even African Swine Fever, the National Federation of Hog Farmers, Inc. (NFHFI) said in a statement.

It said the widespread practice of swill feeding needs to be replaced by more effective modern feeds and technologies.

“Philippine swine production is considered one of the best in the region. As of January 2019, the population is at 12.71 million head and is 0.83% higher than (a year earlier). It is growing albeit at a slower pace because of high production costs brought about by high feed and medication costs,” the organization said in the statement.

It estimated that small-scale hog farms, including backyard raisers, who are likely to employ swill feeding, account for 65% of hog production.

In 2018 the Department of Agriculture banned the use of catering and restaurant leftovers from airports as a measure to contain ASF, present in various countries including China and Vietnam.

The industry will stage a Livestock Philippines Expo 2019 later this month.

The hog raisers described the event as “the biggest livestock-focused convention” in the country, with exhibitors from the feed industry as well as companies offering new technologies in veterinary science and livestock management.

The expo will take place between June 26 and 29 at the World Trade Center in Pasay City.