The Department of Trade and Industry on Thursday said processed meat products from Mekeni Food Corp. tested positive for African swine fever, a finding the company contested.
Trade Undersecretary for Consumer Protection Ruth Castelo tagged Mekeni Thursday, after a spokesman for the Department of Agriculture confirmed that some ASF-tainted processed meat products, including hotdogs, tocino, and longganisa were seized in the port of Mindoro.
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But the company’s president, Prudencio Garcia, said all raw materials that his company uses to process its meat products have corresponding government certificates and permits.
Garcia said Mekeni products may have been mixed with other products being shipped to Mindoro.
ASF is caused by a virus that is deadly to hogs but is not harmful to humans.
As a precaution, the Agriculture department advised the public to always cook thoroughly all food with pork as ingredient.
Earlier, the Philippine Association of Meat Processors Inc. said it would look into reports that some processed meat products were found positive for ASF.
In an interview with radio dzMM, PAMPI spokesman Rex Agarrado said it was unfair that the reports mentioned no brand, which makes it difficult for manufacturers to respond.
He urged the Bureau of Animal Industry for more information.
Meanwhile, Senator Francis Pangilinan urged the authorities to remove processed meats that have tested positive for ASF.
He also said the authorities should name the specific brands, manufacturers and contaminated products involved. With Macon Ramos-Araneta
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