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Melissa O’Dell (301) 734-5222
Marci Hilt        (202) 720-4623


WASHINGTON, Oct. 29, 2008--The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) today launched a new, searchable database, known as FAVIR, for the fruits and vegetables import requirement.
The FAVIR database allows customers to search for authorized fruits and vegetables, by commodity or country, and quickly and easily determine the general requirements for their importation into the United States.  The database will include emergency pest notifications to alert users if there is a change in the import status of a commodity or country.  It also allows APHIS officials and the Department of Homeland Security’s Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agricultural inspectors to quickly determine whether or not a commodity is authorized entry into the United States, as well as the general requirements for importation.
APHIS developed the FAVIR database in response to the July 2007 final rule, known as Quarantine 56 or the Q56 revision, that established a streamlined approach for the importation of certain fruits and vegetables without specific prior rulemaking.  Because there would not be specific prior rulemaking, the commodities approved under the Q56 revision would be identified through FAVIR and not in the Code of Federal Regulations.
To access the system, please visit www.aphis.usda.gov/favir/info.shtml. To learn more about the revisions made to APHIS’ fruit and vegetable regulations, go to Web site listed above and click on the link for Quarantine 56.


Note to Reporters:  USDA news releases, program announcements and media advisories are available on the Internet.  Go to the APHIS news release page at http://www.aphis.usda.gov/newsroom.  Also, anyone with an e-mail address can sign up to receive APHIS press releases automatically.  Send an e-mail message to lyris@mdrdlyriss10.aphis.usda.gov and leave the subject blank.  In the message, type subscribe press_releases.

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