Following the impacts of the African Swine Fever (ASF) outbreak in the Philippines, the Integrated National Swine Production Initiatives for Recovery and Expansion (INSPIRE) Program of the Department of Agriculture (DA) turned over 120 pigs to four cooperatives in Lipa City, Batangas.
The distribution of support formed part of the commitment of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. that all farmers and fishers will receive assistance from the government to ensure improved production and income.
Buklod ng Cumba Multi-Purpose Cooperative, L7 Livestock Agriculture Cooperative, Sto. Toribio Farmers Agriculture Cooperative, and Malitlit Consumers Cooperative each received 30 swine breeder stocks from the DA.
The distributed breeder stocks were born from grandparent pigs donated by the DA-National Livestock Program (NLP) to select farm-cooperators such as EVG Farm and Phillac Farms, Inc.
“Kapag nakikita naming ‘yong baboy na ipinaalaga sa inyo ay naparami ninyo, ibig sabihin ay hindi po kami nagkamali sa pagpili sa inyo.”
“Nagpapasalamat po ako sa EVG Farm at sa Phillac Farms kasi kapag nakikita naming ‘yong baboy na ipinaalaga sa inyo ay naparami ninyo, ibig sabihin ay hindi po kami nagkamali sa pagpili sa inyo. Kasi kung ano po ‘yong mithiin o adhikain namin, sinuportahan niyo po. Kaya sa mga recipient, sana po ay alagaan at paramihin niyo po ito kasi kung madadagdagan po ‘yong babalik ulit sa mga magbabababoy, masisiguro po natin hindi lamang ‘yong suplay ng baboy sa lugar kun’di pati na ‘yong economic activity ng lugar,” DA-Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) Director Paul Limson said.
DA-National Livestock Program (NLP) Director Dr. Ruth Miclat-Sonaco, who concurrently serves as Director of the DA-International Training Center on Pig Husbandry (ITCPH), conveyed both gratitude and satisfaction to Lipeño beneficiaries for their consistent stellar performance.
“Ako po ang unang-unang pinakamasaya talaga dahil isa po ito sa mga unang-unang naging steps of the DA so that we can recover, particularly ang probinsya po ng Batangas. Ang DA, ang ating Regional Field Office, ang ating Bureau of Animal Industry, hindi po kami magsasawang magbigay ng tulong sa siyudad ng Lipa kapag ganito naman [katagumpay] ang ating nakikita,” Sonaco said.
Lipa Mayor Eric Africa assured that under his leadership, the city government will continue to collaborate with the DA and the City Veterinary Office in providing technical and financial assistance to ASF-affected hog farmers and to support the DA’s initiatives towards agricultural development and the attainment of food security.
“We will make sure na mas malawak at mas marami ang makikinabang sa inyong binigay na GP pigs para sa ating mga nagbabalik at nag-uumpisa muling farmers.”
“Sa DA, on behalf of more than half a million Lipeños, maraming maraming salamat sa inyong swine breeding stocks na ipinamimigay sa aming cooperatives. Ito ay aming aalagaan at pararamihin. And we will make sure na mas malawak at mas marami ang makikinabang sa inyong binigay na GP pigs para sa ating mga nagbabalik at nag-uumpisa muling farmers,” Africa expressed.
Supported by the DA Administrative Orders No. 6 and 7 in 2021, the INSPIRE Program is one of the DA’s twin programs against ASF—the other being the Bantay ASF sa Barangay (BABay ASF) Program for intensified disease surveillance and control in the barangay level.
The said program focuses on calibrated hog re-population, establishment of swine farms and facilities, and ensuring easy access to insurance and credit services for hog farmers to improve swine production and to ensure the sufficiency of pork and pork products in the country.
The INSPIRE Program is spearheaded by the DA-NLP with support from its livestock attached agencies, the DA Regional Field Offices (RFOs), the local government units, and other stakeholders including farmers’ cooperatives and associations.
On its official website, the DA-NLP reported having distributed 19,486 pigs for its implementation of sentinel protocol, reaching 8,161 beneficiaries nationwide.