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African swine fever cases drop in Philippines

  • Sun Online Desk
  • 22nd October, 2021 04:57:45 PM
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The number of African swine fever cases in the Philippines has significantly declined, Agriculture Secretary William Dar said Friday, adding the hog disease is now confined to three regions.

Dar told a Senate budget committee hearing that the highly contagious disease might stay "if we won't observe health and quarantine protocols."

The African swine fever has ravaged the hog industry in the Southeast Asian country since the outbreak in 2019 and spread to 12 regions of the country at its peak last year.

According to the Philippine government, the disease has "significantly reduced" the country's swine population by around 3 million, resulting in more than 100 billion pesos (2 billion US dollars) in losses to the local hog farming sector and related industries.

The situation has also led to increases in the retail price of pork products, forcing the government to increase pork imports.

In May, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte placed the entire country under a calamity state for one year to address the impact of the contagious hog disease.