APHIS works to protect the health and value of American agriculture and natural resources. APHIS International Services (IS) supports this mission in an international environment by: (1) collaborating with foreign partners to control pests and diseases before they can harm the U.S.; (2) facilitating safe agricultural trade; (3) ensuring effective and efficient management of internationally-based programs; and (4) investing in international capacity-building with foreign counterparts to build technical and regulatory skills that prevent the spread of damaging pests and diseases.
Nov. 17, 2017 - IS Regional Manager Marc Gilkey and IS Bogota Roberto Guzman worked with Colombian authorities to publish a rule allowing the importation of Colombian avocadoes. After publication of final rule in August, 2017, Colombian Hass avocados can now be exported to the United States complying with mitigation measures established in the operational work plan (OWP) signed with the ICA, and Colombia’s association of avocado producers, Corpohass. The first two containers (20 tons each) originating in two different farms in the Municipality of Pácora, Department of Caldas were inspected and approved for export to the ports of Long Beach in California and Port Everglades in Florida in late October.
Oct. 4, 2017 - On September 5, APHIS published a notice of determination that amends cold treatment schedule T107-d-3 in the Plant Protection and Quarantine Treatment Manual to include grapefruit from Australia. The September 2016 treatment evaluation document recommended adding Australian grapefruit and explained why it is effective at neutralizing certain target pests on grapefruit from Australia. This amendment is effective as of September 5, 2017.
Oct. 4, 2017 - APHIS has published a final rule allowing the import of Japanese persimmons. APHIS scientists prepared a pest risk analysis and determined that commercial shipments of persimmons with calyxes produced under a systems approach can safely be imported into the continental United States. The systems approach includes requirements for packing house registration, orchard monitoring and control of pests, fruit culling, biometric sampling, a phytosanitary certificate with additional declaration, port of entry inspection, and traceback. The rule will take effect on October 12, 2017.
Oct. 3, 2017 - On September 12, Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) announced the lifting of restrictions for Idaho potatoes. The restrictions were put in place over 10 years ago due to the detection of potato cyst nematode (PCN). APHIS and the U.S. potato industry have spent the subsequent years working to address MAFF’s concerns about PCN, which MAFF now has to address domestically following the 2016 announcement of the detection of PCN on the potato-producing island of Hokkaido. With the restrictions lifted, APHIS will focus on additional issues to continue to expand access for U.S. potatoes. U.S. potato exports to Japan have previously averaged $10 million a year without potatoes from the largest producing State in the United States.