Solon urges Agri chief to stop beef importation from US due to mad cow disease
A LAWMAKER asked the Department of Agriculture to stop the beef importation from the United States due to the mad cow disease.
Rep. Angelo Palmones (Party-list, AGHAM), author of House Resolution 2359, said the government may be exposing the Filipino consumers to the deadly disease if it will not stop beef importation from the US.
“Non-importation of beef from the US at this time can better serve the interest of the consuming public,” Palmones said.
Earlier, U.S. authorities reported the first US case of mad cow disease but quickly assured consumers and global importers that meat from the California dairy cow did not enter the food chain.
Palmones said the bovine spongiform encephalopathy or mad cow disease is fatal to cows and can also cause a deadly brain disease to people who eat food contaminated with the brain, spinal cord or digestive
tract of infected carcasses.
“It is the policy of the state to protect and promote the right to health of the people and instill health consciousness among them. Food safety is one of the priority thrusts of concerned government
institutions to promote the health of the public,” Palmones said.
At present, Palmones said food safety standards from production to handling and distribution both in local and imported food products are being observed to provide public health risk free food, including meat
Earlier, the Department of Agriculture said the government will not impose a ban on the importation of US beef saying the incident is a case that is far from creating another mad cow havoc in the US or elsewhere.
DA Assistant Secretary for Livestock Dr. Davinio Catbagan said the infected animal in California has been isolated and “is now for destruction in a rendering plant.”
The Philippines imports beef primarily from Australia, but also Angus beef and frozen rib eye from the US. The US is fourth on our list of beef suppliers. Out of 16 million metric tons of imported beef in 2011, the US supplied slightly over 3 million MT to the Philippines.