Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Philippines Dept. of Agriculture Statements On Unidentified Swine Disease




















#14,252

Although there is rampant speculation in the press that the culprit is African Swine Fever (ASF) - as yet the cause of a recent spike in pig mortality in the Philippines has not been announced. 
Like Taiwan and Japan, the Philippines has been watching the spread of ASF in China, Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia closely, and has increased biosecurity in hopes of keeping this devastating disease out of their country. 
While the Philippines DA statement (below) does not specifically mention the culling of pigs - and remains vague about the number and location of outbreaks - media reports (see Philippines: Still-unknown disease prompts culling of pigs) indicate aggressive steps are being taken to control the outbreaks.

There are a number of pig diseases other than ASF that could be causing these deaths, but none would be as worrisome as African Swine Fever.   Hopefully we'll have lab results in the next few days.

Official Statement of Agriculture Secretary William D. Dar

Author: DA-AFID | 20 August 2019 
Upon my assumption as Acting Secretary of Agriculture, we conducted a series of meetings with the private sector, particularly the leaders of various agribusiness industries, engaging them once again as our major partners in modernizing and industrializing Philippine agriculture.

Even before receiving an incident report over the weekend, they have attended and actively participated in several briefings, during my first two weeks in office, on the major issues and concerns of the country’s animal industry.

Last Friday, August 16, 2019, we received an incident report from our Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) on any increased mortality of pigs raised by farmers in their backyards.

Immediately, we revived and strengthened the Crisis Management Team (CMT) to oversee the planning and implementation of appropriate measures to manage, contain, and control the suspected animal disease or diseases.

We directed BAI to conduct further confirmatory laboratory tests, including sending blood samples to foreign laboratories, to ascertain the cause of the animal’s death.

We also ordered the CMT to work closely with key industry players and local government officials to manage the incident and carry our ground-level operations.

We will institutionalize the active participation of the private sector and LGUs and they will be part of the CMT from hereon to gain their full involvement and commitment, including other technical teams that will monitor and evaluate said recent events.

We assure the animal industry stakeholders and the general public that we are on top of the situation, and we are doing everything possible.

With this development, we have further upgraded our monitoring and vigilance, including the imposition of stricter quarantine measures all over the country’s ports of entry, airports and seaports.

We call on all hog raisers – commercial players and particularly those engaged in backyard operations –  to strictly observe and practice good livestock practices, including the needed bio-security measures.

In all, we will strictly and vigorously implement all existing laws, rules and regulations in protecting the country’s animal industry.

The Crisis Management Team will issue regular bulletins from here on. ###
 
Today, the Philippines DA also posted:

DA, private sector to jointly address hog concerns

Author: DA-AFID | 20 August 2019 
“In partnership with the private sector, we are implementing stronger measures to manage, contain and control the incidence of increased deaths among pigs raised in backyards in certain parts of Luzon.”

This was the assurance made by Agriculture Secretary William D. Dar, to cushion off said situation, as reported by the Bureau of Animal Industry.

As such, he immediately ordered the revival and strengthening of the Crisis Management Team (CMT) to oversee the planning and implementation of appropriate measures.

The Secretary added that the private sector will be part of the CMT, which DA will institutionalize along with the local government units (LGUs).

“We want the active participation of the private sector and LGUs so that we can gain their full involvement and commitment, including other technical teams that will monitor and evaluate recent events,” Secretary Dar said.

“We assure the animal industry stakeholders and the general public that we are doing everything possible,” the Secretary added.

Upon the assumption of Secretary Dar, a series of meetings with the private sector, particularly the leaders of various agribusiness industries, has been conducted engaging them once again as major partners in agriculture.

Secretary Dar directed BAI to conduct further confirmatory laboratory tests, including sending blood samples to foreign laboratories, to ascertain the cause of the animals’ death. Meanwhile, the CMT will work closely with key industry players and local government officials to manage the incident and carry our ground-level operations.

“With this development, we have further upgraded our monitoring and vigilance, including the imposition of stricter quarantine measures all over the country’s ports of entry, airports and seaports,” Secretary Dar said.

He urged all hog raisers, commercial players and those engaged in backyard operations, to strictly observe and practice good livestock practices, including the needed bio-security measures. ### (DA Communications Group)

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