DA-CAR allocates P35.8M funding for holistic approach to end ASF
BAGUIO CITY– The Department of Agriculture Cordillera Regional Field Office (DA – CAR) has allocated P35 million funding for holistic approach to end African Swine Flu (ASF) as it calls for public support for tthe campaign.
DA – CAR Regional Executive Director Cameron Odsey, in a Kapihan media forum here, affirmed that ASF has a big impact on the supply of live pigs and pork. DA estimates that the ASF has affected 30 percent of the country’s hog industry.
The shortage in supply and the increase in the price of hogs is a reality in the country unless we bring back the supply to its normal level, Odsey said as he appeals for public understanding with the present price of pork. The agriculture department, he said, is intensifying its efforts against ASF and in the repopulation of pigs.
Odsey shared that CAR especially the BLISTT (Baguio City and the Benguet towns of La Trinidad, Itogon, Sablan, Tuba and Tublay) area , depend largely on the importation of hogs as the region is only around 26 percent sufficient in terms of pork supply and 60 percent sufficient in beef.
For the ASF effect in the region, DA – CAR data show that 22,197 hogs either died or were culled due to ASF affecting 1,682 farmers.
To help these farmers cope with their losses, DA – CAR provided P20.2 million indemnification fund in 2020 for 4,113 culled pigs of 626 farmers from the different provinces in Cordillera.
DA – CAR also continues to conduct dialogues with the different stakeholders on how to address the price hike of pigs and pork. It also maintains close coordination with the local government units and the Police Regional Office for strengthened animal quarantine checkpoints.
Odsey also disclosed that DA focuses on a holistic approach with its “Babay ASF” program which is allocated P35.8 million funding this year that includes the budget for procurement of additional testing kits, biosecurity paraphernalia and IEC materials to be given out and used in ASF positive areas.
For the repopulation of the hog industry, Odsey shared that DA has initially allocated P500 million for such purpose. All the provincial agriculture offices in the region have already submitted their repopulation plans, he said. **JDP/CCD-PIA CAR