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Sorry, we can’t have crispy Ma Ling chips for now. Here’s why

I like my Ma Ling sliced thinly and fried until crispy. There’s no other way I’m having this popular canned meat loaf. I like eating Ma Ling in the morning with a runny sunny side-up egg or at midnight with beer. Ma Ling sets the standard for meat loaf in the market. But for Ma Ling connoisseurs out there, here’s sad news for you: The Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) temporarily banned the distribution of the meatloaf brand in the Philippines.

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In a report from Inquirer, FDA warned the public due to African Swine Fever virus. The ban used to cover China, Hungary, Latvia, Poland, Romania, Russia, and Ukraine in 2018. However, the list has now extended to processed pork products from 16 countries, including Vietnam, Cambodia, South Africa, and Czech Republic, among others.

Ma Ling, a product from China, will have to be recalled from groceries. FDA officer in charge Eric Domingo says the recall and ban are precautionary measures to prevent the virus from entering the Philippines. “The FDA regulatory board will go around and inspect. We also ask the public to report any sightings [of these banned products] to the FDA,” Domingo told Inquirer.

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African Swine Fever virus is a life-threatening disease to pigs. Although there has been no case yet of it affecting humans, the ban is a safety measure to protect the swine industry in the Philippines, which is deemed to cause large damage to businesses.

FDA will ensure that Ma Ling and other processed pork products will be locked away from public consumption. Those caught violating the ban will have to pay a fine of P200,000.

This is a bummer, but okay, we can wait ’til our beloved Ma Ling returns to markets safely. At least, this ban confirms Ma Ling isn’t made from infamous meats like what some outlandish rumors suggest, right?

Now, what will I have for dinner?

Art by Renz Mart Reyes



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