June 16, 2020


African swine fever re-emerges in Philippine town


Still struggling from the economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis, Bansalan town of Davao del Sur, Philippines is facing another threat as ASF resurfaces in hog farms in the area, Philippine Daily Inquirer reported.


As of June 6, at least 17 pigs have been culled in one of the town villages to contain the spread of the virus, agriculture officials said.


Bansalan Mayor Quirina Sarte ordered the activation of a joint task force to contain swine fever as cases were reported in Buenavista village, the epicentre of the infection.


Bansalan legal counsel Kirby Alborez Villaraiz said laboratory results from the Department of Agriculture (DA) confirmed the infection. Sarte thereafter held an emergency meeting with department heads.


Municipal Agriculturist Zaldy Sumangil said the task force immediately conducted checkpoints within the one-kilometre radius to stop the spread of the infection to the villages of Managa, Union, Poblacion and Anonang.


Sumangil said stricter measures have been put in place in Buenavista, including a temporary ban on the transport of pigs and pork products from these areas. He said all pigs culled were to be buried in the same village where cases were found.


DA immediately imposed the 1-7-10 protocol in Bansalan town—ordering the immediate culling of pigs within the one-kilometre radius from the epicentre, the surveillance and tagging of pigs within the seven-kilometre radius and the mandatory monitoring of livestock for sale within the 10-kilometre radius.


Samples from all pigs within the one-kilometre radius were already submitted to a laboratory and test results will be out on Friday, Sumangil said.


Since the public market is within the one-kilometre radius, meat vendors could sell pork products only from the municipal slaughterhouse.


Villaraiz urged the public not to feed pigs with swill to prevent the spread of infection.


The city government will conduct a thorough inspection to ensure the monitoring of all culled pigs, Sumangil said.