M.A.F. lifts some pork bans
The Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (M.A.F.) has lifted a ban on the sale of some imported canned pork products which had been part of preventative measures against the African Swine Fever (A.S.F.).
The announcement was made in a public notice issued by the Ministry this week.
The notice advised the public that brands of canned pork products have been approved and are now allowed to be sold in retail shops include; Deli Pork Luncheon meat; Tasi Pork Luncheon; Kings Choice Pork Luncheon.
All other brands of canned pork from countries identified as being affected by A.S.F. that have not been approved by the Ministry will remain subject to the suspension.
But all brands of canned pork products from countries that are free from A.S.F. are free to be sold.
Future importation of canned pork products and pork products from countries listed as having the presence of A.S.F. will require the prior approval of the Ministry.
The Ministry also advised the public to obtain clearance from the Quarantine Division of the Ministry should they wish to clarify which countries for which approval has been granted for the purposes of importation.
“For more information, please contact the Ministry’s Quarantine Division on telephone number (685) 20920," the statement reads.
More than 20 countries have been reported to have cases of A.S.F. such as East Timor, South Korea, Philippines, China, Papua New Guinea, and India.
In a previous interview with the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Lopao’o Natanielu Mua, confirmed that the Government was in discussions about importing a machine said to be capable of potentially detecting the A.S.F.
He also revealed that Cabinet has been considering the purchase of one of the machines with the said capability to test for both diseases.
The M.A.F.'s Chief Executive Officer, Tilafono David Hunter, said the suspension on the sale of pork products and importation of pork goods from affected countries is to protect the fragile domestic pork industry.
More than 40 million pigs were killed in China last year after contracting the disease, for which there is no cure.
An estimated 10 per cent of Asia’s pig supplies were said to be affected by the disease. It has a fatality rate of 100 per cent.
The Ministry is currently sending samples of pork products overseas to confirm that they are A.S.F. free.