MANILA, Philippines – President Benigno Aquino III wants the Philippines to soon become a top meat exporter, citing the country’s good record on food safety and disease-free livestock and poultry.
“We want people from different countries to stop by their local grocery stores and markets and choose meat imported from the Philippines,” said Aquino during the recent 2015 Livestock Philippines Expo and Conference held at the SMX Convention Center in Pasay City.
During his speech at the event, Aquino said the Philippines had been free from Avian flu since 2005 and foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) since 2010.
“These achievements alone make us eligible to export meat,” he said, citing the country’s recognition in 2011 as FMD-free without vaccination by the Office International des Epizooties, the world body tasked to monitor global animal health.
“Only four Asean countries, the Philippines included, can boast of this recognition,” said the chief executive.
He said his administration had increased its investment in livestock and poultry by 108 percent and passed key legislations such as the amended Meat Inspection Code and the Food Safety Act of 2013 to promote and maintain food safety standards, protect consumer health, facilitate food exports, and “ensure that our livestock sector continues to grow.”
Aquino also cited the government’s two large-scale projects that would help “maximize the benefits of our eligibility as a meat exporter” – the P120-million poultry dressing plant in Bamban, Tarlac and the P150-million slaughter house in Tanauan, Batangas, which are both Triple A class projects and are targeted to be completed within the year.
A Livestock Industry Recognition Night was also held during the event, honoring government-accredited livestock establishments. Among them are livestock feed maker Philippine Foremost Milling Corporation (PFMC), which bagged top honors from the Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) for strictly adhering to international manufacturing and food safety standards.
PMFC was honored for its state-of-the-art facilities in Manila and Iloilo City – the country’s only commercial feed mills that are ISO 22000:2005 Food Safety Management System.
Also praised were PFMC’s manufacturing plants that conform to the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point/ Codex Alimentarius Commission and the Good Manufacturing Practice international standards issued by SGS Philippines.
PFMC has been producing feed products since 1994. It is a member of the La Filipina Uy Gongco Group of Companies that produces and markets feeds for hogs, broilers, layers, pigeons, fish, and game fowl.
Supporting the government’s campaign for food safety and security, the firm “is fully committed to produce high quality, safe and globally competitive products,” said PFMC Vice President for Trade Feeds Terence Uygongco.