Posted: Thursday, October 14, 2021. 1:10 pm CST.
By Rubén Morales Iglesias: Minister of Agriculture, Food Security, and Enterprise, Jose Abelardo Mai, is in El Salvador to hold meetings with OIRSA, the regional plant and animal health body, and with the Salvadoran Minister of Agriculture.
During the meetings, Minister Mai will be updated on African Swine Fever and the Giant African Snail, two threats they pose to Central America and the Caribbean, and mitigation and control strategies.
While in El Salvador, Minister Mai will also meet with Salvadoran Minister of Agriculture David Josue Martinez for talks on mutual export and agribusiness opportunities between Belize and El Salvador said the Ministry of Agriculture, Food Security, and Enterprise (MAFSE).
The International Regional Agricultural Health Organization (OIRSA) recently alerted Central American and Caribbean countries about the African Swine Fever and the Giant African Snail.
African Swine Fever has been ravaging the Dominican Republic’s pig population. Belize stands to lose $30 million dollars if infested by the African Swine Fever.
As is the African Swine Fever weren’t enough, OIRSA has also alerted countries in the region that the Giant African Snail, an agricultural and garden pest, is now present in Costa Rica.
MAFSE Communications Director Luis Pook said the Giant African Snail eats over 500 species of plants, it reproduces prolifically, and can threaten agricultural crops.
MAFSE has alerted farmers and the Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA) has all its containment protocols in place at the country’s entry points.
Minister Mai is accompanied by CEO Servulo Baeza and Policy Analyst Milagro Matus.
They return on Saturday, October 16.
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