FDA issues temporary ban on imported pork meat products

May. 28, 2019

DAVAO CITY, Philippines — The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a temporary ban on all processed pork meat products from countries affected by the African Swine Fever (ASF) on Tuesday.

In its May 27 advisory, the FDA ordered the temporary ban on importation, distribution, and sale of all pork products manufactured from 16 countries identified as ASF-affected countries.

The affected countries include China (including Honkong and Macau), Hungary, Latvia, Poland, Romania, Russia, Ukraine, Vietnam, Zambia, South Africa, Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Mongolia, Moldova, and Belgium.

“The public is advised to exercise extreme caution in purchasing and consuming processed pork meat products and is advised to only consume processed pork meat products which are sourced from countries other than the above-listed countries suspected to be affected by ASF virus, and are registered with the FDA,” the advisory stated.

According to the World Organization for Animal Health, ASF is “a highly contagious hemorrhagic disease” brought by a virus that causes high fever, loss of appetite and death in two to 10 days on average to affected pigs.

African swine fever is not harmful to humans, but it is fatal to the pigs and can cause a major economic loss up to the Php200 billion in the hog industry of the Philippines.

Department of Agriculture (DA) Secretary Manny Piñol has earlier urged the public to refrain from bringing pork products from affected countries back home.

Pork products manufactured from the identified countries will be confiscated at the ariport of entry and persons responsible could be fined amounting to Php200,000.

“Hindi po ninyo puedeng ikatwiran na hindi ninyo alam sapagkat Agosto pa noong nakaraang taon ay nagpapalabas na ng impormasyon ang ating gobyerno patungkol sa isyu na ito,” said Piñol in a statement.

(You cannot justify that you are not aware of this policy because authorities have issued advisories regarding this issue since August last year.)

The FDA has also prohibited the registration of pork meat products from the identified countries.

“A heightened post-marketing surveillance and audit are being conducted on all concerned and covered establishments, to ensure full compliance to the foregoing FDA order,” the advisory added. (davaotoday.com)

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