November 25, 2008

Philippines targets Asian markets for meat exports

The Philippines intends to tap the markets of Japan, South Korea and Hong Kong for domestic frozen pork and chicken exports, according to the National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS). 


Philippine meat agencies plan to apply for export accreditation from South Korea, and comply with all sanitary and biosecurity requirements by year-end, and from Japan and Hong Kong early next year, said NMIS Executive Director Jane Bacayo.


South Korean businessmen had expressed their intention to import as long as the Philippines can meet their food safety standard, said Bacayo, adding that the Philippines can take advantage of their bird flu free status.


The Philippine government already knows Japan's food safety requirements, and aims to file an application for accreditation to export premium pork cuts to Japan by early next year. The Philippines also plans to submit documents on drug residues monitoring in hogs and chickens to the Hong Kong government early next year.


The Philippines' plan to export pork and chicken products should improve the production standards of the domestic hog and poultry producers, said Bacayo.


Bacayo assured that exports would be monitored to prevent short supplies in the domestic market.


Exporting pork products could increase investment in the sector in the long run, said Renato Eleria, chairman of the National Federation of Hog Farmers, Inc.


In addition, the Agriculture Department plans to allocate at least PHP 500 million (US$10.1 million) for loans to private hog raises for next year's construction of seven slaughterhouses. Of the seven, four will be in Luzon, two in Mindanao, and one in Visayas.

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