LA TRINIDAD, Benguet — For the safety and welfare of consumers and animal raisers, the Provincial Veterinary (PVET) Office is determined to pursue quarantine operations despite the odds and challenges.
Provincial Veterinarian Dr.Miriam Tiongan stressed that the establishment of such checkpoints was primarily for the safety and welfare of consuming public and to prevent the occurrence of transboundary diseases that may affect livestock and poultry raisers. The collection of fees is only secondary, she said.
Established in February last year following the approval of the Provincial Animal Quarantine Ordinance, quarantine checkpoints in entry and exit points of the province are under   supervision and management of the Provincial Veterinary Office.
There were oppositions from businessmen about the quarantine ordinance but provincial officials stood firm.
As shared by those manning the checkpoints, there were adverse encounters in carrying out the quarantine services especially during the initial stages. There were threats and cases of evasion but with the support of networks including the local police, they still managed to take control.
For the year, the PVET Office recorded numerous denial of entry   of livestock, poultry and their by-products.
Denied entries were more than 6,000 kilograms of spoiled internal organs of chicken gizzard and liver including swine intestines. Supposed to be shipped to Tarlac, the stuff stored for a month was brought up to Baguio. But due to the large volume, those manning the checkpoint recommended that these will be ferried back to Bulacan which was the point of origin, said Tiongan.
A total of 130 crates of eggs or equivalent to 1,000,123 pieces were denied entry because of the absence of necessary permit. Upon verification from quarantine checkpoint counterpart, the PVET Office here learned that the eggs were still on heavy treatment and still unfit for consumption as the chicken layers were under treatment.  As a standard procedure, it takes about two weeks before the treatment will dissipate from the eggs until ready for disposal.
Also denied entry were 105 swine heads, 15 cattles and 10 carabaos due to lack of necessary permits.
Confiscated were dead bodies of animals during the course of shipment that included nine swine   152 heads of chicken. These were and buried as these were no longer fit for human consumption, said Tiongan.
Based on PVET records, bulk of those seized traversed along quarantine checkpoints in Marcos Highway, Tuba. There were some cases in n Banangan, Sablan and in Kennon Road.
Tiongan stands firm of PVET’s mandate in continuing its gargantuan tasks to ensure the safety of consuming public and animal raisers and promote public health and safety. – JDP/SCA-PIA CAR, Benguet