The Agriculture department on Sunday banned pork and pork products from Japan due to the African Swine Fever.
“At 12 noon today, I have alerted the Bureau of Animal Industry through [Agriculture] Undersecretary for Policy and Planning Segfredo Serrano to immediately impose a ban on the entry of pork and pork products from Japan following reports of its spread in that country,” Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said on his Facebook page.
He said a written directive will be issued shortly, which will be in effect while quarantine officials are validating the reports with the World Animal Health Organization.
“All quarantine officers in the ports of entry all over the country are directed to implement this directive immediately,” Piñol said.
The quarantine officers were also advised to review their Quarantine Protocols, including the foot baths installed at the Ports of Entry and the monitoring of all meat products being brought into the country by tourists.
According to a report from The Japan News, the ASF virus gene was identified in four separate cases in Japan on Jan. 12 and 16, when it was found in carry-on baggage brought from China at Chubu Airport in Aichi Prefecture and Haneda Airport in Tokyo.
The virus is believed to enter countries via international mail and foreign tourists’ carry-on baggage.
ASF is a viral disease that infects pigs and boars but does not infect humans. The virus survives in the bodies of animals for three to six months and spreads via feces and the raw and processed meat of infected animals. It also spreads through watering places and other mediums that have come into contact with infected animals.