Checkpoints ease on hogs in transit

TRADERS WITH PERMITS

LINGAYEN—All cargo loaded with hogs bound for towns and cities to adjacent provinces will already be allowed to pass through police and provincial veterinarian checkpoints.

The new policy was implemented after Agriculture Secretary William Dar had a consultation meeting with Gov. Amado Espino III and announced the new policy during the Stakeholder’s forum last August 31.

The checkpoint operations have been ordered initially by the provincial government to prevent cargo trucks carrying hogs for slaughter entering and passing through the province and were made to return to their points.

However, to implement the new policy, Dar, who presided over a Stakeholders Forum at the Sison Auditorium, said it is necessary for cargo trucks bringing in hogs from adjacent provinces to be required to produce veterinary health certificates and slaughtered meat must bear NMIS (National Meat and Inspection Service) mark.

Soon, three trucks loaded with 94 hogs from Pampanga and Tarlac bound for La Union and Baguio City were allowed to pass through the PNP- Provincial Veterinarian checkpoints along the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway in Barangay Bobonan, Pozorrubio.

Dar clarified that if the traders could not present any veterinary health certificates and insist on passing through, “you confiscate the hogs”.

Shortly after, the Rosales Police and the town’s market inspectors seized a pork carcass, mixed in crates of cut-up chicken that originated from Bulacan for delivery to Rosales market since it had no meat inspection certificate (under Administrative Order No, 9), Veterinary Medical Certificate and shipping permit. The delivery truck was impounded.

In a talk to newsmen during the forum, Dar said the swine disease that broke out in two provinces had been contained by adopting the “1-7-10” kilometer protocols:

All hogs within one-kilometer radius of the affected barangays were depopulated by collecting and culling all the living hogs so the virus will no longer spread; within seven- kilometers, all the swine were quarantined; and within 10-kilometers, all hogs were strictly monitored to ensure that no hogs left the site.

He said the blood samples of the infected swine were submitted to an accredited international animal laboratory in Spain for confirmatory test and results of which may take up to 3 months. (Leonardo Micua)

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