USDA ADOPTS FINAL RULE PROHIBITING INTERSTATE MOVEMENT OF CITRUS NURSERY STOCK FROM FLORIDA
April 8, 2009
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is adopting as a final rule, with one change, an interim rule that amended the citrus canker regulations to explicitly prohibit, with limited exceptions, the interstate movement of regulated nursery stock from a quarantined area. The interim rule provided two exceptions to this prohibition--one that allowed nursery stock to be moved interstate for immediate export under certain conditions and another that allowed calamondin and kumquat plants to be moved interstate in accordance with a protocol designed to ensure their freedom from citrus canker. Our decision to provide for the interstate movement of calamondin and kumquat plants was based on their apparent resistance to citrus canker infection. However, since the publication of the interim rule, we have confirmed that 47 calamondin plants growing in an area quarantined for citrus canker were infected with the disease. Therefore, this final rule amends the protocol to exclude calamondin plants. The interim rule was necessary to clarify our regulations and to address the risk associated with the interstate movement of regulated nursery stock from areas quarantined for citrus canker.
Notice of this final rule is scheduled for publication in the April 9 Federal Register and becomes effective on May 11.
Note to Reporters: Public notices and other APHIS information are available on the Internet. Go to the APHIS news release page at http://www.aphis.usda.gov and click on the “Newsroom” button. For additional information about this topic contact David Sacks at (301) 734-5271 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.