THE Pork Producers Federation of the Philippines and its allied industries have launched a national campaign that aims to help the local pork production amid the slowing down of consumption due to the Covid-19 pandemic and continued threat of the African swine fever (ASF).
“There is a real threat to the country’s hog industry now. First, when the ASF hit our biggest producers in Luzon then Mindanao, a lot of farmers were discouraged from going back to farming. Second, the pandemic is also affecting the market further hurting the already ailing local pork business,” said Rolando Tambago, president of the Pork Producers Federation of the Philippines.
Tambago noted that one of the negative effects of this pandemic is the slowdown in consumption spending.
“The country’s economy is not expected to recover soon from the negative effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, so consumption of pork is expectedly low,” the industry said.
This is on top of the hike in minimum access volume of pork importation from only 54,210 metric tons (MT) to 254,210 MT as approved by President Rodrigo Duterte.
Tambago said these challenges may ultimately discourage hog farmers from producing hogs, which in the long run could cause the country to rely more on imported pork products.
“This is why we decided to launch the campaign. We want to push for the local pork products by making Filipino consumers aware of the benefits of consuming locally produced products, not just in their health but to the country’s sustainable food production as well,” he said.
He added that every kilo of pork that a consumer buys, supports eight other sectors within the supply value chain of the industry.
The campaign, which carries the message “Eat Pinoy Pork” and “Tatak Fresh” was launched on Sept. 1, 2021 through the organization’s official Facebook Page.
“The primary message of the campaign is ‘Mas Malinis, Mas Masarap, ang Sariwa.’ We wanted to make the consumers know that locally produced pork is assured safe from contamination, more tasty because it has not been stored in cold storages for a long time,” said Tambago.
The Pork Producers Federation of the Philippines has a total of 48 affiliated associations all over the country.
Tambago said they are confident that the campaign will go a long way with the support of all their partner organizations.
“We will be producing information material including posters and videos for the campaign. As of now, we already have the commitment of many of our members and partners in the industry to help push for this promotion and get the message across,” he said.
Besides the Facebook campaign, the group will also be developing its own website where it can put in more information about the country’s hog industry and its efforts to keep the industry afloat and eventually grow it.
Moreover, other industries like the chicken and egg farmers have also joined in the cause by also releasing their version of the campaign logo.
Tambago is inviting everyone to support the country’s agricultural industries by supporting local farmers.
“The best way to support local farmers is by buying local products. Local pork, local chicken, local grains. We should start supporting our own because that is the only way we can ensure a future with sustainable food supply,” he said. (KOC WITH PR)