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Gov’t watching chicken prices

  • Written by Efren Montano
  • Published in Top Stories
  • Read: 228

MALACAÑANG assured the public that there would be “no price increase in chicken meat” as only one area is affected by avian flu.

“Concerned government agencies are now looking at businesses that might take advantage of the situation and are monitoring the price of raw and processed chicken meat in the markets,” said presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella.
    
“We must see to it that (only) uncontaminated meat is sold in the markets,” Abella said.
    
Earlier  Pampanga was placed under a state of calamity after the Department of Agriculture confirmed the avian influenza or bird flu outbreak in the town of San Luis, Pampanga.
    
The government assured the public that the strain – Type A Sub-Type H5 – that hit the province does not infect humans. Samples taken from workers and residents of San Luis have supposedly not shown any signs of illness.
    
Also yesterday the DA banned the shipment of fowls from Luzon to other parts of the Philippines following the bird flu outbreak in the province of Pampanga.
    
“I have ordered the ban of the shipment of fowls from Luzon to other parts of the country,” Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said in a statement on his Facebook account.
    
Pinol, however, clarified that the order does not cover chicks, hatching eggs, and other fowls from other countries coming into Luzon or other areas. The importation would still continue, provide that “stringent quarantine protocols must be observed.”
    
“This means that chicken brought in from the United States intended for shipment to the Visayas or Mindanao may not be taken out of the boxes and must be loaded directly into the connecting flights,” Piñol said.
    
The DA chief said at least 200,000 birds, chicken, ducks, quails, pigeons, and fighting roosters in Pampanga are already being gathered for slaughter. Poultry farmers or owners would get a compensation of P80 per chicken killed.
    
Piñol said there would also be a loan package available to the farmers affected by the outbreak.
    
In the next 21 days, the DA is set to deploy “sentinel birds” in affected farms to check if the virus is still present in certain farms.
    
“If the sentinel birds will not show signs of the disease, the Quarantine Restrictions will be lifted after 90 days,” he said.