African swine flu (ASF) cases continue to increase in various parts of the country posing a challenge to food security and to solid waste disposal.
Environment Secretary Roy A. Cimatu said thatit is the responsibility of all local government units to ensure that all wastes, including biodegradables and food wastes, are properly disposed pursuant to Republic Act (RA) 9003 or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000.
In a study done by the Department of Agriculture (DA), improper disposal of food wastes particularly when these are used in piggeries as feeds, was identified as one of the causes of ASF in the country.
Cimatudirected all regional offices of the DENR and the EMB to issue an advisory to all local government units (LGU) to strictly comply with the provisions of RA 9003 and to properlymanage residuals and biodegradable wastes in their respective areas.
The environment chief stressed that food wastes should be collected by LGUs and private individuals are strictly not allowed to buy or ask for food wastes from establishments.
In the interest of public health and safety, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Philippines has heightened its post-marketing surveillance and has conducted an audit of all concerned establishments to ensure full compliance with Republic Act 9711 or the Food and Drug Administration Act of 2009 and Republic Act 10611 or the Food Safety Act of 2013, and other pertinent laws.
According to the Department of Agriculture, the ASF is a viral disease that is contagious among animals but not to humans. Since it has no vaccine and no known cure,it can place the swine industry at risk.
Solid Waste Management is one of the priority programs of Cimatu.