Caraga remains free of African Swine Flu, says DA

The hog industry in the Caraga Region remained unaffected by the dreaded African Swine Flu (ASF), the Department of Agriculture (DA) said.

Emmylou Presilda, DA Caraga spokesperson, on Wednesday said there had been no confirmed cases  of the ASF virus among hog raisers in the region amid what she called “unfounded” reports of ASF infection in Butuan City and Agusan del Norte.

“Caraga is free of ASF, the DA vouched for the safety of pork products in the region,” Presilda told a local radio.

Presilda said the agency along with other concerned line agencies of the government and local government units would continue to carry out preventive measures to protect the region’s swine population from being infected with the viral disease.

Among the measures that their office made, she said were massive information and awareness campaign on ASF, investigations, and the installation of major checkpoints in all entry points in the region to prevent the entry of pork and pork products from areas that had reported cases of ASF.

These checkpoints are located in Sta. Josefa (Agusan del Sur-Monkayo (Compostela Valley) boundary Loreto (Agusan del Sur)- Laac (ComVal), Pulang-Lupa (Trento, Agusan del Sur), Alegria in Surigao del Norte, and Carmen in Agusan del Norte.

“There are checkpoints in several entries and exit points in the region to ensure that all the hogs entering the region are free from African swine fever,” Presilda said

“Regular disease monitoring and surveillance are intensified through Regional Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory,” she added.

Following the outbreak of the hog disease in Davao Occidental province, several provincial governments in the region—have imposed a ban on the entry of pork and pork products from ASF-infected areas to keep their localities free of the virus, which is known to be fatal to hogs but not to humans. By CL

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