MEXICO CITY — Two-hundred Mexican government employees ate pork rinds and fried, tortilla-wrapped pork on May 14 at a Labor Department garden party to encourage their countrymen to put pork back into tacos, according to The Associated Press.

Waiters in blue surgical masks, black vests and white collars served the government employees. The pork party was part of an Agriculture Department publicity campaign to convince Mexicans it's safe to eat the meat despite AH1N1 fears.

Although experts say the virus isn't transmitted through meat, plummeting sales have cost the pork industry $188 million since the outbreak, according to the Mexican Confederation of Pork Farmers.

Pork is very popular in Mexico and is the main ingredient in traditional dishes such as tacos al pastor and pozole.

Alberto Cardenas, Agriculture Secretary, said the Mexican government plans to buy more pork to feed soldiers, sailors and state oil company workers to boost sales for the pork industry.