Philippines: Ban GM feed, poultry industry collapse

A veterinarian has warned that the livestock, poultry and gamefowl industries of Negros Occidental in the Philippines are facing a collapse with a provincial ban on genetically modified (GM) products.

According to Provincial Veterinarian Renante Decena, alomost 90% of the ingredients for poultry and livestock feeds needed in Negros Occidental are imported, with the majority having been GM, reports the Daily Star.

The average feed consumption needed by Negros Occidental is 140 mt a day, 91.5 mt of which is corn, while the remaining 40% is made up of soybeans, wheat, fishmeal vitamins and minerals, he said.

The 91.5 mt of corn is needed for an estimated 1 mln broilers, 4 mln gamefowls, 0.5 mln layers, 0.8 mln ducks and geese and 0.4 mln pigs, Decena said.

The provincial government has recently ordered the shipping out of GM corn brought into Negros Occidental, in compliance with an ordinance banning GMO products in the province.

Decena noted that Negros Occidental imports 100% of its soybeans, sorghum and wheatmeal, and 90% of its corn needs for feed, most of which are GM.

A meeting with stakeholders will address the feed problem. If stakeholders seek a moratorium on the GMO ban, it will depend on the Office of the Governor, Decena added.

Gov. Isidro Zayco said the provincial government has to enforce the ordinance banning GMO products in Negros Occidental because it is duty-bound to do so.

Source: Daily Star

Natalie Berkhout

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