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DA scraps import ban on pigs from Belgium, meat from Poland

  • DA MO 55-2020 removes temporary ban on imports of domestic pigs and their products from Belgium
  • Temporary ban on imported mechanically-separated meat from Poland lifted under DA MO No. 56-2020

Image by Hans Braxmeier from Pixabay

The Department of Agriculture (DA) has lifted the temporary ban on importation of mechanically-separated meat from Poland, and domestic pigs and their products from Belgium.

DA in Memorandum Order (MO) No. 55 series of 2020 signed on October 26 lifted the temporary ban on the importation of domestic pigs and their products, including pork meat and semen from Belgium.

DA MO No. 56 series of 2020 signed on October 27, on the other hand, removed the temporary ban imposed last January on imported mechanically-separated meat from Poland, which is now free from Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI).

MO No. 56-2020 noted that based on evaluation of the Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI), the risk of contamination from importing mechanically-separated meat from Poland is negligible after a report from the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) showed the HPAI events in Poland are now closed and resolved.

The temporary ban on importation of domestic pigs from Belgium imposed in October 2018 was lifted because there is no documented outbreak of African Swine Fever (ASF) on domestic and captive wild pigs in the European country, as declared by Belgium’s director for veterinary service and OIE representative for Belgium Jean-François Heymans, MO 55-2020 noted. The ASF outbreaks in Belgium only affected wild boars and the last documented case was in March 2020.

MO 55-2020 noted that based on documents submitted by the veterinary services of Belgium and after thorough evaluation of BAI, the risk of contamination from importing domestic pigs and their products from Belgium is negligible.

The lifting of the ban, however, requires certain conditions such as additional attestations on the Veterinary Health Certificate on all exports of pork from Belgium in accordance to the OIE Terrestrial Animal Health Code of 2019.

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