SELLING BAN. Pigs raised on a farm in Burauen, Leyte. The local government has banned the selling of live hogs and pork due to the rising threat of African swine fever in the province starting Saturday (Jan. 23, 2021) until Jan. 29. (Photo courtesy of Endalicia Agrisan Quilloy)

TACLOBAN CITY – The town of Burauen in Leyte has banned the selling of live hogs and pork due to the threat of African swine fever (ASF) in the province.

Mayor Juanito Renomeron signed Executive Order (EO) No. 02-2021 imposing the one-week ban starting Saturday until midnight of January 29 to keep its ASF-free status.

“Selling of live pigs and fresh, frozen, chilled, cooked, or semi-cooked pork meat are prohibited and may be extended depending on the recommendation of the local task force against animal-borne diseases,” Renomeron said in the EO released Friday night.

Earlier, the local government banned the entry of live hogs and pork products after the Department of Agriculture (DA) confirmed the first case of ASF in the region from backyard farms in Abuyog, Leyte on Jan. 14.

The disease affected its nearby towns of La Paz and Javier, based on the latest advisory of the regional task force against ASF.

Renomeron said the town’s slaughterhouse and the meat section in the public market will also be closed for week-long disinfection.

“Home slaughtering, house-to-house selling, or any forms of distribution of fresh pork, whether for personal consumption or commercial purposes, is prohibited,” he added.

Meanwhile, the DA regional office here urged the public to immediately report unusual swine mortality and contact the DA-BAI at 0920-854-3119 or the regional ASF coordinator at 0915-184-1883.

Pigs affected by ASF usually show high fever, distinct reddish spots on the neck, chest, and extremities, and bleeding of internal organs that could lead to death within two to 10 days.

Although the virus does not affect humans, infected animals are unfit for consumption under the Food Safety Act. (PNA)