Negros Occ. tightens security vs ASF

Paraveterinarians in Pontevedra, Negros Occidental conduct shoreline monitoring on Jan 17, 2023. (PVO-Negros Occidental photo)

By Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD City – Negros Occidental Provincial Veterinarian Dr. Placeda Lemana said they tightened security at all possible entry points in coastal municipalities after the detection of confirmed Asian Swine Fever (ASF) cases in Guimaras.

Lemana said that the Department of Agriculture (DA-6) confirmed that Guimaras province recorded its first confirmed ASF cases in Buenavista, Guimaras through convective PCR (cPCR) testing on Dec 16, 2022.

Lemana said that almost all commercial piggery farms in the province are located in the 4th district of Negros Occidental.

She pointed out that the hog industry in Negros Occidental is the top backyard swine producer in the country valued at P6 billion.

Hogs and pork products from Panay island and Guimaras are banned in Negros Occidental, which remains ASF-free as of this time.

Lemana said they are mobilizing para-veterinarians they have trained to the different coastal barangays of 4th district as a roll on-roll off vessel is slated to operate on the Pulupandan-Guimaras route.

Earlier, a joint ASF task force was also created by the provincial government of Negros Occidental and highly urbanized Bacolod City to guard the major ports and airports in the province.

Lemana said that with their massive information drive through the help of media, they have noted that travelers are now aware on the banning of entry of live pigs and pork-related products from Panay going into Negros.

She noted that the volume of confiscated pork-related products passing through major ports in Bacolod City has been going down

Lemana said that last week the Task ASF confiscated P60,000 worth of pork products compared to more than P200,000 in the previous weeks.