Pigar-pigar threatening carabao population

PROVINCIAL ORDINANCE NOT ENFORCED

DAGUPAN CITY—Pigar-pigar may be a tasty delicacy in Pangasinan but it is beginning to threaten the population of carabaos in the province.

Gloria dela Cruz, regional director of the Philippine Carabao Center (PCC) based in La Union, sounded the alarm and asked the provincial government to help enforce the provincial ordinance regulating the slaughter of female carabaos that are still productive.

She lamented that the supposed buy-back program of the provincial government in support of the approved ordinance is not also enforced.

The buy-back program intended to encourage farmers to sell the animal to the government and not to slaughter houses.

She said her office is helpless in a bid to stop farmers from selling their carabao to be slaughtered.

“Even if we produce the best kind of carabaos through our artificial insemination program, we cannot do anything if a farmers need cash instead of helping disperse the good breed,” dela Cruz said.

Dela Cruz said she continues to appeal to local governments to exert efforts to spare female carabaos that are still productive.

She expressed concern that the growing popularity of pigar-pigar in Dagupan City, Mangaldan and Binmaley and other delicacies that use carabeef is encouraging the slaughter of carabaos.

Carabeef is considered a better meat because it has lower cholesterol than cows and goats.

Pigar-pigar is a local delicacy made of thinly sliced meat of carabao and liver quickly deep fried and served with slices of onions.

She added that carabao breeding also helps address poverty and hunger because a carabao also produces milk that can be consumed by humans or made into different foods like pastillas, or sell the milk fresh for added family income. (Tita Roces)

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