Thursday July 19, 2018

DA works to strengthen Cordillera’s livestock industry

IN A BID to strengthen the livestock industry in the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), the Department of Agriculture (DA) recently held the Animal Health and Welfare Workshop and Forum.

At least three major obstacles are currently faced by the industry in the region discussed during the forum attended by livestock coordinators and technicians at the municipal level from all over the region.

Dr. Anthony Bantog, Livestock Sector Chief reported the three major obstacles include unsuitable climate, lack of pasture area, and lack of technical know-how of some farmers.

Dr. Bantog said these are the major concerns the DA-CAR Livestock wants to address since it affects the production of the livestock commodities in the region.

According to a research by the Philippine Statistic’s Authority, the sufficiency level of the goods is not enough. As of January 2016, chicken is the top commodity in CAR, with Ifugao as the top producer, while cattle are the lowest.

“If we cannot achieve to make everything sufficient, as much as possible at least we could reach something close to that,” he said.

Dr. Emelinda Lopez, Veterinarian IV and the Animal Rabies Focal Person at the Bureau of Animal Industry meanwhile gave updates on the National Rabies Program and also discussed the Operational Plan for Rabies Elimination in Dogs (Oplan RED).

The government, in coordination with several agencies such as the DA, Department of Health, Department of Education, and the Department of the Interior and Local Government, work to eliminate rabies in the country by 2020.

Activities like veterinary missions, trainings, seminars, and information dissemination are done throughout the country to make this possible said Dr. Lopez.

“The best cure for rabies is to not get bitten. This is possible through responsible pet ownership,” said Dr. Lopez.

The veterinarian also discussed the global framework for the elimination of dog-mediated human rabies, which is the ASEAN Rabies Elimination Status (ARES). Socio-cultural, technical, organizational, policy and legislative, and resources are specific areas targeted to better assess the situation.

In support, Dr. Nover Calub of the Animal Health and Welfare Division if BAI, furthered the discussion on the rabies program. The level of risk per municipality was also determined with the help of some tools. (PR)