NEGOCC CONTINUES BAN | Mayor allows entry of pork to Bacolod to address growing demand

NEGOCC CONTINUES BAN | Mayor allows entry of pork to Bacolod to address growing demand

Bacolod City has lifted the ban on the entry of live pigs, pork and pork products from other parts of the country to address the growing demand and revive the local hog industry.

This, after Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and Bacolod City Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez had signed a joint executive order on Friday, February 23, setting aside the joint EO they issued in 2023, which set the guidelines for the entry of pigs and pork products from areas with reported cases of African swine fever (ASF).

On March 7, 2023, both officials issued a joint EO imposing a ban on the entry of all live pigs, boar, semen, pork, and other pork products from areas with African swine fever to the city and the province.

But Provincial Administrator Rayfrando Diaz II clarified on Sunday, February 25, that the province would not lift its pork ban since it was not classified as a red zone.

“We are almost ready for repopulation and we want to protect local swine growers,” he said.

He added that the provincial government will come out with a separate EO on Monday, February 25.

“Bacolod is a pork consumer and they want supplies to come in regardless of where it comes from,” Diaz said.

Under the Department of Agriculture (DA) classification, Bacolod is currently tagged as red (infected) zone while Negros Occidental is identified as dark green (free) zone or cities and municipalities where ASF is not detected and are considered of low risk.

“In view of the different classifications of the Province of Negros Occidental and the City of Bacolod and upon the recommendation of the DA, there is a need to set aside Joint EO No. 1, Series of 2023,” Lacson and Benitez said.

Benitez, meanwhile, signed Executive Order (EO) 09-2024, dated Feb. 23, directing the City Veterinary Office (CVO) “to allow the movement of pork and other swine products in the city pursuant to the provisions of DA Administrative Circular No. 22, series of 2022.”

The mayor was referring to the DA directive that provides national zoning and movement plan for the prevention and control of African swine fever (ASF) and redefines the zone classification.

“With the increasing demand for pork products, there is a need to issue additional directive to avert any threat of shortage of basic food necessities, and at the same time, prevent the spread of ASF and help revive our local hog industry and its allied industries," he said.

The mayor said the directive is consistent with the updated DA Administrative Circular No. 22 and aligned with local issuances and national policies and directives.

Even with the lifting of the ban, the mayor stressed that necessary permits and pertinent documents should accompany all shipments of live pigs, pork, pork products, and other related products.

The order came after the increase of pork price to P410 per kilo has been noted in Bacolod City.

Meanwhile, at least 17,766 hogs have died due to swine diseases in Negros Occidental, with losses estimated at P200 million.* (with reports from PNA)


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