Cebu bans pigs, pork products from Luzon for 100 days
Cebu Governor Gwen Garcia on Tuesday announced a 100-day ban on pigs, pork, and pork products from Luzon due to the African Swine Fever outbreak.
During an emergency meeting with the African Swine Fever Provincial Task Force, Garcia announced the immediate prohibition.
She said the ban will be implemented to prevent the virus from affecting pigs and hogs in the city.
Garcia also issued an executive order enforcing a ail-out ban on Luzon's live hogs, pork meat, and other pork-related products. The executive order is set to be approved by Cebu province's legislative body. If approved, this will supersede the order implementing the 100-day ban.
"There a difference between alarm and panic. We must rather be alarmed with what's going on right now because we have the DA (Department of Agriculture) that refuses up to now to admit there is cause for alarm. What causes panic is non-information and not being educated enough, ignorance," Garcia said during Tuesday's meeting,
Garcia also directed to withdraw and ship back hogs, frozen pork, and pork products that entered the city prior the ban. According to her, the products will be sent back to the suppliers for disposal.
The local governments of Cebu City and Mandaue City also decreed absolute restriction on live pigs, pork meat and pork products from Luzon.
“Mayor Jonas Cortes of Mandaue City and Mayor Edgar Labella of Cebu City already imposed a total ban, but they can only impose that within their own territorial jurisdiction. This is now in support of the total ban being imposed by Mandaue City and Cebu City because the ports of entry of these banned products are in the Province of Cebu, especially our sea ports,” Garcia said.
The governor is set to meet establishment owners and representatives who sells or use frozen pork products. She directed the Hotel Resort and Restaurant Association of Cebu (HRRAC) to submit an inventory of their pork and pork-related products.
"In over 100 members, I was disappointed to learn only three submitted: Bai hotel, Waterfront Hotel in Cebu City and Quest Hotel. This is why I said I was giving them a deadline to submit their inventories at 5 p.m. today, because those that fail after this afternoon, we will supply the list of uncooperative hotels and restaurants to the media," said Garcia.
The inventory will determine if the products consumed by the establishments were shipped from ASF-affected areas in Luzon. Cristina Eloisa Baclig/DMS