August 22, 2017
The Department of Agriculture lifted on Monday a ban on shipment of poultry products from Luzon to other parts of the country after a bird flu outbreak in Pampanga and Nueva Ecija.
Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Pinol said they have lifted the ban shipping poultry products based on the bio-security consideration and recommendation of bio-security experts.
He said they have to consider the situation of the local farms and farmers affected by the outbreak.
“I think this was the more emotional consideration was the fact that we also have to listen to the pleadings of the farmers because if we think it is safe then let them ship their products because they are very down in their farms”, Pinol said.
The Department of Agriculture temporarily banned movements of poultry products from Luzon to Visayas and Mindanao on August 15 to prevent the spread of avian influenza which affected three towns in Pampanga.
Pinol said they are confident the bird flu in San Luis Pampanga, San Isidro and Jaen Nueva Ecija are contained.
Pinol said they will monitor if there would be additional case of flu in Jaen and San Isidro Nueva Ecija for two weeks before they can “safely” say that the problem is contained.
“All we need to do now is just wait out for about another 11 days because our reckoning date in Jaen and San Isidro is about 10 days ago if there will be no other incident we can safely say that we have contained the problem”, he said.
Roy Abaya, Central Luzon regional director of the department of agriculture, said 289, 136 birds were culled within the 7km control area.
Pinol said chicken eggs can be shipped but ducks eggs must be cooked before it is shipped. Chicks, chicken meat and other poultry products must come from accredited farms inspected by the quarantine officers and certified to be free from flu before it can be allowed for shipping.
The Department of Agriculture will appeal to the Singapore, Japan and South Korea to lift the export ban on poultry products from the Philippines, he said.
Pinol said they already gave the P20 million assistance for farmers in San Luis, Pampanga and P31 million to DA-Central Luzon Region and they are waiting for complete documentation before releasing the money.
“It’s not a question of whether there is money. There is money, we are only waiting for the documentation”, he said.
Pinol said he will recommend to President Rodrigo Duterte to buy dressed chickens from local farmers to fill in the food supply needed in the war torn city of Marawi. “I’ll find a way. I’ll talk to the president”, he said.
Pinol said he will also talk to the Department of Social Welfare and Development to buy chickens for in Marawi.
“Let’s talk to the DSWD (Department of Social Welfare and Development). There is a need of many supplies in Marawi”, he said.
Peter So, director for Philippine Poultry Integrated Alliance, said the price of chicken in Luzon has dropped into P18 for each kilo and P10 each kilo for small chicken from P80 for each kilo.
He said the price of chicken in Visayas is P60 to P70 and gradually decreasing.
Pinol said the chicken that will be bought from the farmers can be stored in a storage facility in Davao while gradually transferring to Marawi. Alanna Ambi/DMS
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