July 21, 2022
New US-Philippines African swine fever project announced
A new African swine fever (ASF) project to address issues related to ASF called "Capacity building in risk assessment to support safe international trade of US pork products in the Philippines" has been announced by the US National Pork Producers Council (NPPC), US Department of Agriculture's Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS), leaders from the Philippine Department of Agriculture and the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, the National Pork Producers Council reported.
Terry Wolters, president of NPPC, said the NPPC is pleased to have collaborated with the governments of the Philippines, the US, and the University of Minnesota to see this grant proposal through to completion.
He said by forming international alliances, American pork producers can continue to offer consumers in both nations high-quality, low-cost pork products while also protecting American agriculture from foreign animal disease.
The Philippines has experienced persistent ASF outbreaks and is looking for better solutions to contain the virus and the ensuing rise in food prices. In order to determine the requirements of the Philippines' government and producers for ASF outbreak management, NPPC collaborated with the Philippines embassy in Washington, D.C.
The FAS graciously accepted the government assistance request from the NPPC international affairs team and the University of Minnesota, and they then announced they would fund the project in both the Philippines and Vietnam.
Dr Andres M. Perez, professor in the department of veterinary population medicine and head of the university's Centre for Animal Health and Food Safety, said the knowledge to be gained from the programme is a win-win for both countries as it will help them better understand how to prepare, prevent, and mitigate a potential ASF outbreak. The risk to the US pork industry is minimised by helping other nations implement control measures that stop the disease's spread.
By laying the groundwork for a risk-based approach to developing and implementing animal health policies and programmes, the ASF programme will support the readiness and transparency of the Philippines' animal health services. Workshops for provincial officers will be included in the programme, as well as intensive in-person training for fellows chosen by representatives of the Philippines' Department of Agriculture. In addition to the workshops, participants will receive asynchronous training based on materials created and distributed beforehand.
- National Pork Producers Council