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Import Restrictions Imposed on Over 100 Kinds of Plants for Planting

Thursday, April 18, 2013
By Shawn McCausland
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

Effective May 20, the Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service will add 31 taxa of plants for planting that are quarantine pests and 107 taxa of plants for planting that are hosts of 13 quarantine pests to the lists of plants for planting whose importation is not authorized pending pest risk analysis. APHIS states that the goal of the NAPPRA category is to prevent the importation of listed plants while a PRA is conducted to determine all pests associated with those plants and, if available, appropriate mitigations.

According to APHIS, one comment on the May 2011 final rule creating the NAPPRA category expressed concern that the restriction of horticulturally significant plant taxa under NAPPRA without concurrent attention to controlled import permits and integrated measures regulatory strategies will discourage compliant trade and encourage unauthorized importation and could also subject APHIS to challenge under international trade agreements. APHIS responded by noting that it issued a proposed rule on CIPs in October 2011 and is developing a proposed rule to establish a framework for integrated measures programs. APHIS intends for these two rules to provide increased flexibility to safely import NAPPRA-listed plants and notes that in the meantime limited quantities of plants on the NAPPRA lists may be imported by USDA for experimental or scientific purposes under controlled conditions.

APHIS has also identified several additional countries that need to be exempted from NAPPRA action for various host taxa (i.e., imports of such taxa will continue to be allowed under the conditions in the federal order), as follows.

- all citrus longhorned beetle host taxa from Canada
- Acer spp. from New Zealand
- Aralia spp., Cotoneaster spp., Fagus spp., Robinia spp. and Styrax spp. from the Netherlands
- Ficus spp. from Thailand
- Hedera spp. and Robinia spp. from Israel
- Hibiscus spp. and Quercus spp. from France
- Pinus spp. and Rhododendron spp. from Japan
- Pinus spp. from Korea
- Rubus spp. from the United Kingdom

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