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By: Mylen Manto | Published Wednesday, February 12, 2020
Authorities assure that pork supplies are enough and prices remain steady amidst pork bans issued in Cebu. (Junjie Mendoza)

Prices of pork products in Cebu will remain as is in the next three months despite the issued pork bans for all products from regions affected by the African Swine Fever (ASF) in the country.

Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) 7 director Asteria Caberte said prices of pork have been steady since last year based on their monitoring done in supermarkets and wet markets last February 3 to 6, 2020.

The Central Visayas Pork Producers Cooperative (CVIPPCO) also assured that Cebu has enough supply of pork and pork-related products throughout the duration of the ban.

Governor Gwendolyn Garcia issued the Executive Order (EO) No. 7 on Tuesday, February 11, banning the entry of pork and pork-related products, live boar, frozen semen and commingled products from Mindanao for 90 days. 

This will take effect on Thursday, February 13, 2020 in consideration of those that are already in transit from the southern Philippine region.

“You know Mindanao is an island, dali kaayo ang pag cross og boarders from one province to the next. And we know nga this can easily be transmitted through clothing, through tires of those vehicles, through grass dali kaayo,” she said.

Initially set to end this June, Garcia also extended the ban for pork and pork-related products from Luzon, Davao, and Eastern Visayas indefinitely to protect Cebu’s P10-billion hog industry as well as its backyard hog raisers.

She said that during the local chief executives’ convergence in Manila on Monday, February 10, mayors and governors considered banning again the entry of pork from Luzon after reports of the ASF virus spreading as far as Benguet.

CVIPPCO president Roland Tambago informed Garcia that 80 percent of Cebu’s hog production is sourced locally while 20 percent is from Mindanao, specifically General Santos City.

However, he clarified that there is now an oversupply of pork worth P8 million due to the drop in the pork meat consumption caused by the ASF scare since last year. 

With this, the governor encouraged hotels and big restaurants in the province to start sourcing their products from ASF-free areas. 

“I am asking if naa bata’y enough supply for the Cebuanos, dili bani maka-cause sa pagsaka sa pork. They gave me that assurance for as long as we shall keep it for 90 days, which is why I have decided to issue EO banning all pork, pork related products, live boar, live hogs, and commingled products coming from the Mindanao,” she stated.

The governor will meet the officials of CVIPCCO, Philippine Coast Guard, Cebu Port Authority, DTI, Bureau of Quarantine 7, Food and Drug Administration 7, National Meat Inspection Service, and all concerned sectors today, February 12 to finalize the operationalization of the EO. (Mylen Manto)