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Government to subsidize pigswill transition to crop-based feed: Tsai

2018/12/22 17:43:11

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文, front, second left)

Taipei, Dec. 22 (CNA) President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said Saturday the government will subsidize small-scale pigswill farmers who lack the necessary equipment to properly treat food waste to help them transition to crop-based feed, in an effort to guard against African swine fever (ASF).

Speaking to reporters after a closed door meeting with hog farmers in Yunlin County, Tsai said the subsidy will be available to operators who lack adequate heating equipment to treat leftover waste.

The potential spread of ASF from China to Taiwan is a major issue as it could severely impact Taiwan's pig farming industry, Tsai said, adding that farmers must make a collective effort to reduce the risk posed by swine fever in Taiwan.

According to acting Council of Agriculture (COA) Minister Chen Chi-chung (陳吉仲), who accompanied the president, swill must be heated to a temperature of 90 degrees Celsius for 60 minutes to kill bacteria before being fed to pigs.

There are 2,045 pigswill farms in Taiwan, at least 67 having no adequate heating equipment to treat food waste for feed, Chen said.

The COA will make it a priority to reach out as soon as possible to those lacking the necessary equipment to help them transition to crop-based feed, he added.

According to Yunlin County Magistrate Lee Chin-yung (李進勇), the county currently has about 1.45 million hogs, the largest of any county in Taiwan.

The county has also recently been conducting checks on local hog farms to ensure they have not been affected by swine disease, Lee said, urging local farmers to respect relevant regulations by treating food waste for feed at a high temperature to guard against ASF.

(By Chiang Chun-liang and Ko Lin)
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