The staff of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) at the United States Embassy in Bogota, in conjunction with our colleagues at the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) Bogota office, represent the interests of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in Colombia.
Growing agricultural trade between the United States and Colombia has created a vital role for APHIS ensuring that new trade opportunities are realized and that existing trade between the two economies flows smoothly. The APHIS Bogota office maintains technical working relationships with our Colombian counterparts to resolve Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) issues whenever they arise. This relationship contributes to maintaining the success of agricultural trade-related commercial activities between the two economies, helping ensure they thrive.
In addition, our office maintains direct contact with industry trade groups, importers and exporters in order to assist and facilitate resolution of trade-related issues as they occur at Colombian ports of entry.
Finally, as a principle role of APHIS is to make sure the United States and our trading partners adhere to the SPS rules set forth by the World Trade Organization (WTO), as well as the other relevant international standards-setting organizations, APHIS' role will continue to increase as the United States and Colombia continue to expand their current trade relationships and establish new partnerships into the foreseeable future.
The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is a multifaceted Agency with a broad mission area that includes protecting and promoting U.S. agricultural health, regulating genetically engineered organisms, administering the Animal Welfare Act and carrying out wildlife damage management activities. These efforts support the overall mission of USDA, which is to protect and promote food, agriculture, natural resources and related issues.
Marc C. Gilkey, Regional Manager
Countries of Responsibility: Colombia, Ecuador and Venezuela
Apr. 6, 2018 - APHIS has published a notice in the Federal Register updating its import requirements for fresh sweet orange, grapefruit, mandarin, clementine, and tangerine fruit from Colombia. The decision to amend these requirements was effective upon publication; however, APHIS will accept comments for the next 60 days. Colombian citrus exports to the United States are estimated to reach $700,000 annually.
On April 5, USDA Marketing and Regulatory Programs Under Secretary Greg Ibach spoke about USDA’s perspectives on regulating innovative plant breeding techniques before an audience of 80-plus private, public and academic representatives from 19 Latin American countries, the United States, and Canada. The meeting included presentations on potential applications of genome editing from developers, principles of safety/risk assessments and differing regulatory approaches regarding this innovative technology. The objective of the meeting was to provide a venue to build on what have been largely positive regulatory stances in the region and to consider ways to promote a like-minded approach among other trading blocs around the world.