A group of inspectors from the Department of Plant Health of the Ministry of Agriculture of Brazil (MAPA) visited the Copiapo Valley to verify in situ the various actions that the Chilean industry is taking to implement a systems approach, an alternative measure to fumigation with methyl bromide, to export table grapes to the Brazilian market.
The President of the Association of Agricultural Producers and Exporters of the Copiapo Valley (APECO), Lina Arrieta, appreciated the visit of the Brazilian inspectors and highlighting the great importance that advancing the systems approach would have for the region, as it will allow them to expand their destination markets. She also stated that the inspectors' visit had allowed them to show their "partners' seriousness and work, as we have been preparing for more than 3 years to comply with all the regulations, monitoring, and audits required to avoid fumigation with methyl bromide."
Miguel Canala-Echeverria, the general manager of ASOEX, stated, “opening new markets and improving the access conditions of our fruits are key aspects to increase our exports. We have been working together with the Agricultural and Livestock Service and the Foundation for Fruit Development in the implementation of a systems approach with the objective of advancing the inspection of fruit to Brazil and the USA. We believe that if the United States and Brazil approve this approach, the competitiveness of table grapes would improve as replacing the fumigation would allow the fruit to arrive with better quality and conditions at its destination. We hope to have a positive response from the respective phytosanitary authorities in the near future.”
It should be noted that the producers of the Copiapo Valley have been preparing for the past 3 years to implement a systems approach, especially for the United States market. This work can open an important door for them to advance a future work with the Brazilian phytosanitary authorities.