Foot And Mouth Disease Free Philippines – Now A Reality

Do you still remember the time when Philippines was plague by a very infectious disease. Not a human disease, its an illness of cloven-footed animals, the foot-and-mouth diseases (FMD). Hand-foot-and-mouth disease (HFMD) is a different matter and should not be confused with fmd.fmd

FMD is a viral disease affecting cattle, buffalo, sheep, goat and pigs. It spread by direct contact (animals to animals, vehicles, insects, human, soils, etc..) or by air. Mode of transmission is fast that it was able to knock down our swine industry. Local and export market were severely affected. No one want to buy swine meat due to fear of being affected by the disease. I was only buying fish and vegetables during that time.

If you are wondering if it can be transmitted to humans, the answer is yes. People can get FMD but its a rare case. The virus is sensitive to stomach acid and rarely able to cause infection. You should be afraid more of mad cow disease.

Authorities strengthened its efforts to eliminate the dreaded disease. Now, we can nearly harvest the fruit of hard work.

Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala is optimistic that the Philippines will soon be declared entirely as free from the dreaded foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) by the World Organization for Animal Health or Office International des Epizooties (OIE).

With such favorable OIE declaration — expected to be formalized in May during the 79th General Session of the World Assembly of OIE Delegates in France — the country will favorably gain a foothold in the global meat market, particularly exports of pork and poultry meat products.

This means a greater local and export market and a safer meat to eat. South Korea is one of the major export prospect. The county have fmd outbreak and pork production is expected to decline by 760,000 metric tons.

Hope the government can also fully stop the illegal trade of double dead / botcha meat. FMD is out but botcha is still in.

update as of june 21, 2011

Philippines is now completely FMD free and may now export meat and meat products to the rest of the world.

The OIE certification was received on behalf of the Philippine government and Sec. Alcala by agriculture assistant secretary for livestock Davinio Catbagan on May 26, 2011, in Paris, France, during the 79th general session of the OIE, May 22-27, 2011. The certificate was signed by OIE president Dr. Carlos A. Correa Messuti and director-general Bernard Vallat.

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