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USDA to Allow Imports of Pitahaya from Ecuador

Tuesday, June 20, 2017
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

The Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has issued a final rule that, effective July 20, will allow imports of fresh pitahaya fruit (dragon fruit) from Ecuador into the continental U.S. provided that it is produced in accordance with a systems approach that includes requirements for fruit fly trapping, pre-harvest inspections, approved production sites, and packinghouse procedures designed to exclude quarantine pests. The fruit must also be imported in commercial consignments and accompanied by a phytosanitary certification issued by the national plant protection organization of Ecuador stating that the consignment was produced and prepared for export in accordance with the requirements of the systems approach.

APHIS notes that under this rule if a single larva of the South American fruit fly (Acanthocereus fraterculus) is found in a shipment from a place of production (either by the NPPO in Ecuador or by inspectors at the U.S. port of entry) the entire lot of fruit will be prohibited from import and the place of production of that fruit will be suspended from the export program until appropriate measures agreed by the NPPO of Ecuador and APHIS have been taken.

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