The Philippines has temporarily banned the importation of porcine processed animal proteins from Italy and other ASF-affected countries strictly for use in aquafeeds. Aquaculture stakeholders are concerned that this situation will affect the aquafeed industry and have a grave and lasting impact on the viability and growth of the entire industry, local news reported.
Norbert Chingcuanco, vice president of Feedmix Specialists Inc. II, explained that aquafeed producers had long been using rendered animal protein and other similar products, in addition to fishmeal and soybean meal. However, like fishmeal, these ingredients are not currently produced in the Philippines in sufficient quantities. According to The Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI), a total of 130,720 metric tons (MT) of porcine animal products were imported from BAI-accredited plants in the United States and the European Union, of which 91,500 MT or 70% were sourced from accredited plants in Italy.
“The Russian-Ukrainian war led to tighter and stricter restrictions. These two countries are major suppliers of raw materials. Our government uses PCR equipment to test for ASF, but it doesn't check if the virus is active or inactive. It just shows the presence of the virus, but it doesn't indicate if it is infectious or not. We are not asking the government to completely do away with ASF safeguards. We just want them to exempt the raw materials needed to produce our feed,” said Chris Co of Oversea Feeds Corp.