The Sectoral Committee on Economic Development endorsed the Department of Agriculture (DA) Region IV-A’s African Swine Fever (ASF) Preparedness Plan during its third quarter meeting on August 6 at the National Economic and Development Authority Region IV-A, Barangay Milagrosa, Calamba City, Laguna.

The preparedness plan is DA Region IV-A’s effort to prevent the entry of African Swine Fever in Calabarzon. The plan outlines how the DA and LGUs can work together in responding to an animal disease outbreak. The plan includes the mobilization of a Rapid Action Team, financing and compensation policy, and livestock insurance.

The African Swine Fever, according to the World Organisation for Animal Health, is a highly contagious haemorrhagic viral disease affecting both domestic and wild pigs. The virus can be spread by direct contact with infected pigs, ingestion of contaminated pork products, and illegal disposal of infected carcasses. There is no approved vaccine against African Swine Fever yet.

ASF outbreaks have been reported in many countries including neighbouring countries like Cambodia, China, Laos, and Vietnam. Although the virus does not affect human health, DA Director Arnel de Mesa advised the public to avoid meat products and by-products from ASF-affected countries.

Ben Patrick U. Soliguin, NEDA Region IV-A | August 13, 2019