Cold inspection facilities planned for Subic, Manila, Angat, and Davao or GenSan

THE Department of Agriculture said it plans to establish four cold examination facilities in agriculture (CEFA) this year for imported farm goods.

Agriculture Secretary Francisco P. Tiu Laurel, Jr. said: “This year we will build four. One in Subic, one in Manila Port, one in Angat… then the fourth in Davao or General Santos,” Mr. Tiu Laurel Jr. said at a forum late Tuesday.

The CEFAs are intended to ensure that produce imports are disease-free and to mitigate the risks from smuggled farm goods.

“The money is there, we have to obligate it. We have to do (it) in the next few months, hopely by September.” Mr. Laurel said.

He added that the Angat facility in Bulacan will be used as a laboratory, and for rendering and waste disposal.

“This is where we will burn problematic meat and smuggled goods,” he said.

The DA last year signed a memorandum of agreement with Pacific Roadlink Logistics, Inc. to build the facility.

All imported agri-fishery products are to undergo a 100% examination by the various food regulators overseeing animal industry, plant industry, fisheries and aquatic resources, and meat. — Adrian H. Halili