Google map of M’lang municipality, North Cotabato.

M’LANG, North Cotabato – This town is now free from the African swine fever (ASF), a local agriculture official said Tuesday.

“With the cooperation of all stakeholders we were able to contain the disease with no additional cases since March 30,” Arlyn Encarnacion, the town’s agriculturist said.

M’lang was declared under the state of calamity due to ASF infestation in November 2021, resulting in some PHP15 million worth of losses to the town’s hog industry.

The infestation also forced the local agriculture office to depopulate 3,689 hogs from 659 affected farmers in the town’s 23 villages.

The affected villages included New Lawaan, New Antique, Lika, Dalipe, Katipunan, Malayan, New Consolacion, Sangat, Inas, Magallon, Bialong, Dugong, Tawantawan, Buayan, Langkong, Lepaga, Bagontapay, New Kalibo, Pulanglupa, Pag-asa, New Rizal, New Janiuay and Ugpay.

According to Encarnacion, all farmers have already received financial assistance from the local government unit (LGU), and the Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) for those who registered their livestock.

Meantime, the LGU has strictly imposed the biosecurity level 1 on all piggeries where safety standards are required such as the installation of footbaths, septic tanks, wearing of suitable gears, and controlled entry of persons.

“We are now conducting a series of consultations and coordination with the Department of Agriculture to formulate the feasible actions ahead”, Encarnacion said. (PNA)