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Bukidnon and CDO hog raisers, local officials join DA vs. ASF

Author: DA Communications Group | 16 February 2021

Hog raisers’ groups and local chief executives in Bukidnon and Cagayan de Oro City (CDO) are partnering with the Department of Agriculture (DA) in the vigorous implementation of the Duterte administration’s hog repopulation and “Bantay ASF sa Barangay” twin program.

Agriculture Secretary William Dar over the weekend led several consultation meetings with Northern Mindanao hog raisers’ association, Monterey contract growers, CDO backyard raisers, and Bukidnon Governor Jose Ma. Zubiri and CDO City Mayor Oscar Moreno to strengthen partnerships in combating the spread of the dreaded African Swine Fever (ASF) and join hands in the hog repopulation program.

During the farm machinery distribution, on February 12, at the Bukidnon provincial capitol, Governor Zubiri gave his full support and commitment to the twin swine program, as he received on behalf of dozens of farmers’ cooperatives and associations (FCAs) various farm machinery and agricultural projects worth more than P500 million from “One DA” family agencies.

Secretary Dar also met with contract growers and partners of San Miguel Food Inc. and Monterey on possible partnership to combat ASF and hog repopulation program.

On February 13, he met with the officers and members of the NorMin hog raisers’ association to discuss collaborative biosecurity measures to manage, prevent and control ASF. Also, they initially committed to transport 450 hogs a week to Metro Manila.

Finally, he joined Mayor Moreno at the CDO city hall, where a virtual presser was held with CDO and Northern Mindanao media persons, responding to queries on ASF, hog repopulation program, and other agri-fishery programs and interventions of “OneDA” in CDO and Bukidnon.

He said the DA will partner with the LGUs, hog raisers, veterinary groups, and the private sector in the vigorous and sustained implementation of biosecurity measures under the “Bantay ASF sa Barangay” program.

These include counterpart investments of the LGUs in the provision of PPEs, ASF rapid test kits, and vehicle disinfection systems, among other needed equipment. Misamis Oriental provincial and CDO city veterinarians reported on February 10 that ASF was detected in backyard farms in barangays Mambuaya and San Simon, in the city; and in Barangay Jampason, in the municipality of Initao, and in Barangay Pagawan, Manticao, both in Misamis Oriental.

To help affected backyard raisers in CDO, Mayor Moreno said the city government has committed an additional P2,000, on top of the P5,000-indemnification per culled pig provided by the DA. Asked on his reaction to the reported ASF incidence, Moreno said: “We are worried and depensa kami para hindi mag-spread. In the meantime, we put in place our ASF isolation and eradication program, including information campaign for the community to participate in the surveillance to ensure na hindi kumalat ang ASF.”

He also thanked secretary Dar for the DA’s continued assistance, saying: “Ako ay nagpapasalamat kay Secretary Dar at sa DA for helping us as we move forward. Itong panahon ng pandemic, alam natin na everybody is affected at sa ating gobyerno ay talagang mabigat. But we are inching in, and who knows one good light that we see is that agriculture is showing its resiliency and strength. Kaya maganda ang chance natin to recover and be stable again.”

Secretary Dar said this year the DA will provide CDO several projects like a packing house and cold storage facility, a monolithic dome, and enhancement of urban agriculture. The city’s backyard hog raisers also pledged their support.

“We would like to express our full support to the programs of the Department of Agriculture, particularly in promoting backyard hog raising. We commend the strong leadership of secretary Dar,” said Benjamin Conteras, president of Cagayan de Oro backyard hog raisers association.

During the two-day visit in Bukidnon and CDO, the DA chief was joined by Dr. William Medrano, undersecretary for livestock; Noel Reyes, spokesperson and assistant secretary for strategic communications; Mat Maderazo president of Planters’ Products; and Carlene Collado, DA region 10 director. ### (Kristel Merle, DA-AFID)

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