Tight watch for Swine Fever invasion

March 08, 2019

THE Bureau of Customs (BoC) at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) is closely monitoring all shipment and parcels for pork and pork products contaminated with African Swine Fever and likewise guarding against smuggling of wildlife and illegal drugs.

Dr. Simeon Amurao Jr., Director III, Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI), Dr. May Magno, Chair of the National African Swine Fever Task Force and other BAI officers discussed in briefings possible entry of pork meats and meat products from African Swine Fever Virus affected countries, namely: China, Belgium, Hungary, Latvia, Poland, Romania, Russia and Ukraine.

In September and October 2018, cases of pork meat products contamination were recorded in Korea and Japan through dumplings and hotdog products.

According to the BAI, an outbreak of the African Swine virus can affect the 40 million plus live hogs in the Philippines and can destroy the P2 billion worth of swine industry in the country.

To guard against the epidemic, BAI officials and Port of NAIA District Collector Mimel M. Talusan initiated more briefings and information dissemination to Customs NAIA frontliners of Terminals 1 ,2 and 3 to strengthen the vigilance against the African Swine Fever.

Customs NAIA will continuously coordinate closely with regulating agencies to secure the borders against entry and exit of prohibited, regulated goods to protect the swine industry and livelihood in the Philippines including the illegal smuggling of endangered wildlife species.

Products accompanied by import permit or the Sanitary and Phyto-Sanitary Import Clearance are qualified for release in ports the same with wildlife imports and exports.