Bananas from the Philippines Allowed Into Hawaii, Guam and Northern Mariana Islands
The Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has issued a final rule that, effective Nov. 10, will allow the importation of fresh bananas from the Philippines into Guam, Hawaii and the Northern Mariana Islands. As a condition of entry, such bananas will have to be produced in accordance with a systems approach that includes requirements for:
- registration, monitoring and oversight of places of production;
- trapping for the fruit flies Bactrocera spp. to establish low-prevalence places of production;
- covering bananas with pesticide bags during the growing season;
- harvesting only of hard green bananas;
- requirements for culling, safeguarding and identifying the fruit; and
- inspection by the national plant protection organization of the Philippines for quarantine pests.
Bananas will also have to be accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate with an additional declaration stating that they were grown, packed and inspected and found to be free of quarantine pests in accordance with the proposed requirements. These are the same conditions under which bananas from the Philippines were already authorized for importation into the continental United States.