CEBU City Mayor Edgardo Labella has signed Executive Order 44, series of 2020, banning the entry of live hogs, pork products and byproducts from Mindanao to Cebu City for a period of 60 days.
Labella’s order was issued on Thursday, Feb. 13, 2020 days after the Department of Agriculture (DA) confirmed that the African swine fever (ASF) has reached some parts of Mindanao.
“There is an urgent need for the Cebu City Government to prevent the entry of the ASF virus into the City and the rest of the province and save local backyard and commercial hog raisers from losses due to deaths of pigs,” the order said.
Cebu is considered the fourth biggest producer of pork in the country as it contributes an estimated P11 billion to the country’s agricultural industry.
Labella tasked the Office of the City Veterinarian to confiscate pork products and its by-products if they are determined to be from areas in Mindanao currently afflicted with the ASF.
Live hogs, however, will be shipped back to their port of origin if their owner fails to comply with quarantine documents.
Earlier on Feb. 11, Tuesday, Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia issued a 90-day ban on the entry of live hogs, pork-related products, byproducts and commingled food products from the entire island of Mindanao as part of intensified measures to guard against the ASF.
Members of the Central Visayas Pork Producers Cooperative (CVIPPCO) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) 7 assured the governor that the prices of pork products in Cebu remained stable.
Roland Tambago, CVIPPCO president, said 80 percent of Cebu’s hog production is sourced locally while 20 percent is from areas in Mindanao, particularly General Santos City.
Tambago said Cebu had enough pork supply worth P8 million due to the low consumption of meat products attributed to the ASF. (JJL, ANV/ JKV )