BACOLOD

Sanchez: They never learn

Nature Speaks

WHEN it comes to law enforcement on agricultural products, no one can fault Negrense governors for being remiss in their duties and obligations.

In 2007, the provincial government has banned the entry of genetically-modified corn from Panay. I took part in series of training to detect GM corn with the assistance of international environmental organizations such as Greenpeace.

Of course, such actions were backed up with provincial ordinances. Public and private lawyers joined hands in formulating the ordinance. Law enforcement officers were trained. NGOs mixed up with various personnel in understanding the perils of GMOs.

I recall these events as Negrenses showed the world how they can get acts together. One heart, one soul.

Then there’s the HFCS boycott that brought a multinational company down to its knees.

Then there’s the opposition on the possible entry of coal-fired plants in San Carlos City. As in the past, this movement has won, with the affirmation of Gov Eugenio Lacson that no pollutive industries will be allowed on sacred Negrense soil.

Now comes the confiscation of pork products. The issue is to prevent the entry of pork possibly contaminated with the African swine fever.

Probably learning from the anti-GMO campaign that it’s better safe than sorry. Or the more scientific principle, apply the precautionary principle advocated by environmentalists.

In the span of one month, members of the Provincial African Swine Fever Task Force seized P1.85 million worth of pork products.

From September 18 to October 18, a total of 2.75 tons of assorted pork products were seized at the Bacolod-Silay Airport in Silay City and Bacolod Real Estate and Development Corporation port in Bacolod City.

Among the confiscated pork products were the truckload of siopao worth P1.12 million that weighed 8,640 kilograms on October 16. These importers have not learned their lessons from various campaigns.

Also seized were 15 kilograms of hot meat and 89 cans of imported pork luncheon meat during inspections at different public markets and grocery stores in the province.

It has been nearly two months since the provincial government started enforcing the 90-day ban on pork and pork products from Luzon after the presence of the dreaded virus was reported in some of its provinces.

The stake is bigger than the previous campaign. Any premature lifting of the existing ban will pose serious and irreversible damage to the P6 billion swine industry of the province. Good point.


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