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June 2, 2009

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is amending its fruit and vegetable regulations to allow the importation into the continental United States of commercial consignments of fresh eggplant from Israel.  As a condition of entry, the eggplant must be produced using a systems approach that includes requirements for pest exclusion at the production site, fruit fly trapping inside and outside the production site and pest-excluding packinghouse procedures.  The eggplant must be accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate issued by the Israeli national plant protection organization with an additional declaration confirming that the eggplants have been produced in accordance with the aforementioned requirements.  This action will allow for the importation of commercial consignments of fresh eggplant from Israel into the United States while continuing to provide protection against the introduction of quarantine pests.

This final rule is scheduled for publication in the June 3 Federal Register and becomes effective on July 6.


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 Melissa O’Dell at (301) 734-5222 or by e-mail at melissa.l.o’dell@aphis.usda.gov.



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