The Plant Protection Unit (PPU) within the Antiguan Ministry of Agriculture has lifted the ban on the import of citrus fruits, limes, lemons, oranges, tangerines and grapefruits, once they are subjected to certain pre-export treatment.
This decision was made after the completion of a risk assessment procedure, determining whether citrus from Florida could be imported to Antigua and Barbuda.
In a PPU statement issued to the media on the weekend, the unit appealed to importers to pay attention to the rules before importing citrus fruits from the United States.
The unit said a valid permit must be sought from Plant Protection. It must also be presented to the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services officials to acquire a Phytosanitary Certificate and both documents must be presented to Plant Quarantine Inspectors in Antigua and Barbuda for clearance to enter the country.
The twin-island state had discontinued importing oranges from Florida because they contained fruit flies, an invasive pest that has infested farmlands in Miami. The country was, however, still obtaining bitter lemons and limes from the United States.