APHIS Proposes to Allow Persimmon from New Zealand to be Imported into the United States

APHIS Proposes to Allow Persimmon from New Zealand to be Imported into the United States

The United States Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is proposing to amend its regulations concerning the importation of fruits and vegetables to allow fresh persimmons from New Zealand into the United States.  APHIS scientists determined that persimmons produced under a systems approach will ensure the risk of plant pests entering the U.S. through the imported persimmons is managed, allowing persimmons to be safely imported.

APHIS published a pest risk assessment for stakeholder review and comment in April 2015. The assessment described the measures required to mitigate identified plant pests.  This systems approach, under which persimmon from New Zealand can be safely imported into the United States, includes the following measures:

  • persimmons can be exported in commercial consignments only (consignments for sale and distribution);

  • persimmon-producing orchards and packinghouses will have to be registered and approved by the National Plant Protection Organization of New Zealand;

  • persimmons must meet requirements for orchard pest control, post-harvest safeguards, fruit culling, the ability to traceback shipments to the orchard where they were grown, and treatment with either hot water or modified atmosphere treatment before shipment;

  • persimmons must be accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate with an additional declaration stating that they were produced under, and meet all the components of, the systems approach. 

  • persimmons must be inspected and found to be free of quarantine pests in accordance with the proposed requirements. 

APHIS will consider all comments that we receive on or before October 25, 2016, at the Federal eRulemaking Portal.   Comments can be submitted online at http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2015-0052 or by mail at Docket No. APHIS-2015-0052, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, Station 3A-03.8, 4700 River Road Unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737-1238.

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