GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 12 Nov) – Pork producers here and nearby South Cotabato province will finally start early next year the shipment of cut pork meat products to various markets in the Middle East.
Dr. John Pascual, livestock coordinator of the Department of Agriculture (DA) in Region 12, said they are currently working on the arrangements for the delivery within the first quarter of 2016 of an initial 13,000 kilos of “pork-in-a-box” products from the region to buyers based in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), including overseas Filipino workers.
He said they were able to enlist three Filipino food distributors in Dubai as consignees for the initial pork shipment.
Pascual personally went to Dubai late last month to negotiate with potential buyers and coordinate the entry of pork products into the UAE markets.
“We will be sending a 40-footer refrigerated container van of choice pork cuts for the first shipment,” he told MindaNews.
He said a 40-footer container van may accommodate around 200 heads of slaughtered swine at an average of 65 kilos each or a total of 13,000 kilos.
The freight shipping time from the Makar port here to Dubai could take 13 to 15 days, he said.
Pascual said he will meet with swine growers and pork producers here next week to discuss the specific details of the shipment and the arrangements for the consolidation of their produce.
He said they will tackle the pricing of the pork products, freight costs and other related expenses.
They will also set some strategies to ensure the quality of their produce and eventually sustain the shipments, he said.
As of October, DA-12 already certified eight companies in the region for the planned pork shipments to the UAE.
Six of these companies are based in this city while the two others are located in South Cotabato.
Region 12 is presently the country’s leading producer of “pork-in-a-box” producers.
Data from the DA Region 12’s Veterinary Quarantine Services showed that the region produces around 120,000 heads of excess hogs annually that were valued at around P1.09 billion.
In terms of pork, the area produces around 12,000 metric tons a year that were valued at P1.97 billion.