Some pork products of the Mekeni Food Corp. were found positive for African Swine Fever (ASF) virus, according to the Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Animal Industry (DA-BAI) on Nov 4.
In a press briefing, BAI Chief Ronnie Domingo said that samples of Mekeni’s skinless longganisa and hotdog were positive for ASF, as evident of tests conducted last October 25, a day before the food company recalled all its pork-based products.
Earlier, the DA said tocino was included, but clarified later on that it was not.
The DA and Department of Health (DOH), according to Domingo, will conduct further investigation to trace the source of their meat.
Canada, France, and the United States, which are discovered to be the meat sources of the food company, turned out negative for ASF.
Mekeni Food Corp. stressed that despite this “unfortunate development”, they will actively cooperate with the government in its campaign to halt the spread of the said virus.
In a statement, Mekeni said that operations of their pork-based processing area has been closed since October 26. The facility has been cleansed and disinfected, and meat products pulled-out from the market have been quarantined, they added in their statement.
Meanwhile, the FDA said that out of 178 accredited meat manufacturing companies, 63 were already inspected.
According to FDA, they will tie up with National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS) to prevent the spread of ASF virus and inspect all of the manufacturing companies.
The World Health Organization for Animal Health said that although ASF is a highly contagious hemorrhagic disease of domestic and wild pigs, it poses no threat to human health.
Furthermore, anyone who will be found liable and guilty of trading and selling sick or dead pigs face imprisonment of six to 12 years, and fines up to P1 million.–