Rizal 2nd District Rep. Juan Fidel Nograles has appealed to hog and pig raisers in Montalban (Rodriguez) to cooperate with the Department of Agriculture (DA)-Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI), the local government, and other authorities tasked to monitor and prevent the possible spread of a swine disease that has yet to be identified, stressing that their assistance was vital in efforts to contain possible threats to livestock in the area.
Speaking at a television news program Thursday, the young lawmaker urged swine farm owners in his district to comply with DA protocols in place in three barangays in Montalban––Macabud, San Isidro, and San Jose––that have been quarantined because of reports of increasing number of hog deaths in the three localities.
“The priority now is to prevent the spread of whatever is causing these deaths to other parts of Montalban.”
Affected backyard swine farmers said their pigs showed loss of appetite, recumbency, vomiting, skin hemorrhage, dark discoloration in the extremities, and sudden death. The DA-BAI said several diseases, including African Swine Fever or ASF, could be associated with the clinical signs. Results of tests conducted on affected animals will be available by two weeks at the earliest.
“While the DA has yet to confirm the cause of these deaths, it is in the best interests of all hog farmers to strictly comply with DA-BAI directives regarding the matter,” said Nograles.
The agency implemented its “one-seven-ten” policy over the weekend as part of efforts to quarantine and depopulate the affected areas. The “one-seven-ten” protocol requires all hogs within a one-kilometer radius be culled, while those in the seven and 10 kilometer radiuses will be strictly monitored.
The lawyer said that “the priority now is to prevent the spread of whatever is causing these deaths to other parts of Montalban.”
“Among all regions in the country, CALABARZON (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon) has the second largest volume of hog production. If we allow this affliction to spread to other towns, other provinces in the region, this will deal a heavy blow to the swine industry,” stressed the solon.
“Our neighbors are now depending on us in the district to do our best.”
“Our neighbors are now depending on us in the district to do our best to limit the damage caused by this disease.”
In 2018, the total volume of hog production in the country was 2,319,764 metric tons, while the total volume of hog production in CALABARZON was 381,590 metric tons. The total volume of hog production in the province of Rizal, on the other hand, was 89,576 metric tons.
The livestock industry has recently experienced positive growth. In 2018, the gross value of hog production at current prices was P268 billion, 10.8% higher than the gross value of hog production of 241.9 billion pesos in 2017.