Inmaculada Rodriguez-Piñero, PSPV-PSOE MEP, announced that a mission of the Directorate General of Plant Health of the European Commission will visit the Valencian Community in October to meet with the Valencian Citrus Forum, address the problems of the sector and its demands, to ensure third countries are subjected to balanced rules.
Rodriguez-Piñero achieved scheduling this visit during a technical meeting held with four members of the Directorate General, which had been convened to show appreciation for the work done by the European Commission in approving the cold treatment for orange imports from South Africa and to address the serious situation caused by citrus interceptions with banned phytosanitary products imported from Turkey and Egypt. In total, and according to the data transmitted by Rodriguez-Piñero to the European Commission, these interceptions account for 492 of the 539 breaches by third countries in the last year and a half throughout the EU.
Given the concern expressed by the MEP, the representatives of the European Commission have announced that a mission of their technicians is ready to go to Turkey next week to investigate its citrus analysis procedure and prevent them from sending oranges and mandarins to the EU with pesticides that are not authorized in the Union. DG SANTE has explained that, in recent months and as published in the European Union's Official Journal, the EU has increased checks on Turkey and Egypt, and that they are now obliged to certify that their products comply with European regulations.
The MEP thanked the European Commission for the follow-up they are carrying out because it is fundamental for the future of Valencian citrus farming. "We must be as demanding with imports as we are with our farmers, only then will we be fair and help European producers be more competitive," said Rodriguez-Piñero.