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Argentinian fresh fruit subject to new requirements to enter Canada

The National Agro-Food Quality and Sanitary Service (Senasa) reached an agreement with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) to implement a System of Integrated Measures for Lobesia botrana for the export of fresh Argentinian fruit to that country.

Last June, the CFIA announced that it would amend the phytosanitary import requirements for fresh fruit in order to prevent the entry of the Lobesia botrana pest under Directive D-13-03.

The latter specifies an extensive list of countries and plant products affected by the new phytosanitary requirements imposed by the North American country.

It should be noted that, for the CFIA, the Phytosanitary Certificate issued by the Argentinian service was the only requirement for the shipment of plant products from Argentina, without any reference to pest regulation. After the aforementioned change, the Senasa will have to certify that each shipment is free of Lobesia botrana.

In this context, and given the commercial interest of the export sector, the Argentinian national service made the CFIA a proposal for the implementation of a System of Integrated Measures for the pest in question, which was approved by the agency.

The agreement covers the following products: grapes, blueberries, cherries, plums, peaches, pomegranates and kiwis. All operational procedures for the enforcement of this measure have already been approved for the current season.

"Blueberry and cherry shipments have already been made to Canada under this system, and exports of the remaining products affected are expected to be made also in the coming weeks. This way, the phytosanitary certification for the export of these products will have an alternative to the application of quarantine treatments with methyl bromide, which would entail higher direct and indirect costs," said Phytosanitary Certification Director Martin Delucis.

The implementation of this change was carried out in stages; the first affected grapes and blueberries; the second included several species, including the Prunus spp. (cherries, plums, peaches, nectarines or almonds, among others) and pomegranates.

There is a third stage in which kiwis will be included, but it is not yet in force.

Exports of Argentinian fresh fruits to Canada between 2012 and 2015 amounted to: 2,631 tonnes of blueberries (79%), 463 tonnes of grapes (14%), 86 tonnes of figs (3%), 79 tonnes of cherries (2%), 72 tonnes of kiwis (2%) and 19 tonnes of pomegranates (1%).

Source: Prensa Senasa

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