DUMAGUETE CITY – The prices of pork in Negros Oriental, particularly in this capital city, continued to rise amid a perceived low supply of live hogs, authorities said Monday.
Dr. Alfonso Tundag, quarantine officer of the Department of Agriculture-Bureau of Animal Industry (DA-BAI), said that for the past two months, Negros Oriental had zero shipments of live hogs outside of the province.
“There were no outbound shipments of live hogs from Negros Oriental even though only a few areas in the province are still affected by the African Swine Fever (ASF),” Tundag noted.
The quarantine officer said that technically, suppliers from green zones or areas with no ASF cases can still ship out their live hogs to other provinces provided they have complied with the requirements and if the destinations would receive them.
Tundag said it is unusual that Negros Oriental would experience a limited supply of pork if it has not made deliveries outside of the province.
The prices of lechon (roast pig) and pork, he said, have gone up considerably since late last year.
Current market prices vary between PHP340 to PHP370 a kilo of lean meat, compared to at least PHP220 last year.
Lechon de leche or roasted pig suckling costs as much as PHP4,000 to PHP4,500, or about PHP1,000 higher than last year's.
Jaymar Vilos, information officer of the Provincial Veterinary Office, said that only Ayungon town and Tanjay City still have reported cases of ASF.
Recent data showed that Tanjay City has culled 40 heads.
Since the start of the ASF infections last year, Ayungon has reported 190 pig deaths.
Live hogs and pork meat from Ayungon and Tayasan are not allowed outside of their jurisdiction while all other areas in the province can ship out their pigs provided they are given certification by the local government unit.
Vilos believes there is enough supply of live hogs for distribution in the market.
“What is needed here is to connect the hog suppliers to the sellers and distributors of pork, especially in Dumaguete,” he said. (PNA)