Pork producers support DA’s industry programs

CEBU CITY -- Pork producers in the country assured that they are committed to supporting the initiatives and programs of the Department of Agriculture.

The expression of support was made during the recent courtesy visit of officers and members of the Pork Producers Federation of the Philippines, Inc. (Pork Producers) to DA officials.

Officers and members of the Pork Producers Federation of the Philippines, Inc., led by its president Rolando Tambago (8th from left), pay a courtesy visit to Department of Agriculture officials. (Photo courtesy of Pork Producers)

Various issues concerning the pork industry were discussed during the meeting attended by DA Senior Undersecretary Domingo Panganiban, OIC-Director Dr. Paul Limson of the Bureau of Animal Industry and OIC-Director Dr. Clarita Sangcal of the National Meat Inspection Service.

Pork Producers Chairman Nicanor Briones said the meeting was a good start to forging a more open communication between the government and the local pork stakeholders.

“We are grateful to Undersecretary Panganiban, Dir. Limson and Dir. Sangcal for the meeting and listening to the concerns,” Briones said in a statement.

Pork Producers President Rolando Tambago said Panganiban assured that the DA will always be open for the association in case there are issues affecting the pork industry that need to be addressed.

“We truly hope that this will start a more cooperative setup for the betterment of our industry,” said Tambago, president of the Cebu-based Virginia Farms Inc.

Among the issues discussed during the meeting were the continuing problem with the African Swine Sever (ASF), the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the industry, the extension of lower tariff for pork imports, and lifting the import ban on porcine processed animal protein from Italy.

Tambago said the local industry is still reeling from the effects of ASF that has devastated many pork producers, and has led to many, particularly backyard raisers, to close their businesses.

“Many people rely on the industry for their livelihood so it is important to keep them going. Unfortunately, the losses have been very hard on a lot of us,” Tambago said.