The Department of Agriculture (DA) said on Friday that most of the processed pork products tested positive for African swine fever were homemade.
According to DA spokesperson Noel Reyes, the meat products were seized by the authorities in the hands of a Metro Manila traveler who went to Calapan, Mindoro.
He added that only one bag of marked processed meat had been retrieved from the traveler.
The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) and the National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS) is still investigating whether the labeled one has just been tainted with homemade goods, he said.
Reyes added that the FDA has the right to name the product.
Consumer advocacy group Laban Konsyumer Inc. and the Philippine Association of Meat Processors Inc. urged the authorities to release more data on ASF-positive pork products after a copy of a clinical laboratory study from the Veterinary Laboratory Division had been leaked to the media showing that three meat samples had been infected with the ASF virus.
The FDA, on the other hand, reported that it is still waiting for the DA’s report to decide whether it is necessary to remove pork products, given that they are still considered safe for consumption.
Reyes also said that customers should still be patronizing pork. “We encourage the general public to continue to buy pork products from market vendors and meat stores with NMIS certification,” he said.
He also appealed to small backyard hog farmers not to sell their ASF-infected pigs to traders to avoid further spread of ASF.
Read more related