By Glazyl Masculino
BACOLOD CITY – About 27 kilograms of pork asado siopao from Luzon was seized at the Bacolod-Silay Airport in Silay City, Negros Occidental over the weekend.
Provincial Veterinarian Renante Decena, co-chair of the Provincial Task Force on African Swine Fever (ASF), said the pork products, estimated at P8,000, were intercepted by the livestock inspectors and personnel of the Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI), who are part of the task force, assigned at the airport.
The pork asado siopao, which was transported from Metro Manila, formed part of the 34 packs totaling to 175 kilograms of various products for a food cart business in the province.
It was the first confiscation undertaken by local authorities since the implementation of the 90-day temporary ban of pork products from Luzon, in the province last September 11.
The temporary ban is the province’s measure to ensure the safety of the P6-billion swine industry of Negros Occidental, which is being considered as among the top producers of swine in the country.
Though the province remains ASF-free, Decena stressed the need to be proactive in order to protect the local swine production.
“The confiscated pork asado siopao from Luzon can be a carrier of the virus,” Decena said, adding that it can be contagious and can bring harm by contaminating the animals.
The consignee of the product, who is from Bacolod City, decided to “surrender” the confiscated items, which were immediately burned.
Meanwhile, Decena reiterated its call for the public, especially passengers traveling to the province, to report the possible entry of pork products from Luzon.
Port personnel in the province were already deputized as members of the tracker team, he added.