APAL continues to liaise with the Australian government, major retailers and biosecurity experts over the United States’ interest in Australian apple markets.
Many growers will be aware that in 2018, the US government requested access to the Australian market for apples grown in the North-West region of the US Due to trade agreements, Australia cannot object for trade or commercial reasons.
As part of this process the Australian government is required to prepare an Import Risk Assessment to understand the key biosecurity risks to Australia. To ensure that these biosecurity risks are fully addressed and to protect the Australian industry, APAL has engaged a biosecurity expert and established an Expert Advisory Group to oversee the process.
The draft of the assessment is due to be released in August 2020 and once released, Australia’s apple and pear industry has 60 days in which to provide a response to any of the issues raised.
In its pre-submission APAL provided a detailed report into the risks associated with allowing US apples into Australia. It has made it clear that any consideration given by government into allowing access needs to be backed by extremely robust systems. If these cannot be achieved access should not be given.