The country’s agriculture officials issued the ban on March 8.
Philippines’ agriculture secretary, Emmanuel F. Piñol, said the country needed to enact emergency measures in terms of the import of processed porcine animal proteins from ASF-infected countries. He said the country will no longer issue phytosanitary import clearance for processed porcine/pork meal imports for feed use, reported the Business Mirror.
Piñol also ordered Department of Agriculture officials at ports to confiscate of imported pork meal shipments.
Countries that are no longer allowed to ship pork products into the Philippines include Vietnam, Mongolia, Belgium, China, Germany, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Moldova, South Africa, Zambia, Latvia, Poland, Romania, Russia, Ukraine, Hungary and Japan.
“Evidence supports consumption of contaminated feed as one of the possible transmission routes of ASF virus to domestic pigs. There is a need to prevent the entry of ASF virus through animals feeds of porcine origin to protect the health of the local swine population,” noted Piñol in the memorandum instigating the ban.
ASF spread in Asia
The ASF virus is present in Asia and also in parts of Europe.
The World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) reported that 28 of China’s provincial-level administrative units have reported one or more ASF outbreaks. Official reports say nearly one million pigs have been culled in China since the outbreak began in August last year. The virus has also entered neighboring Vietnam. Since that country’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) first confirmed its ASF outbreaks on February 19 2019, a total of 221 ASF outbreaks were reported in 17 provinces/states; more than 23,400 pigs have been culled, as per the most recent FAO update.
The Mongolia food and agriculture ministry also reported an ASF outbreak on 15 January 2019; since then there have been 10 more cases reported in six provinces.
The disease was also confirmed in pig farms in Poland in February.