The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) proposes to expand the production areas in Australia authorized to import fresh citrus fruit into the United States and revise the conditions under which citrus from Australia may be imported.
The proposal was unveiled Dec. 17 and will be available for review and comment until Feb. 16, 2021.
Currently, APHIS allows the entry of fresh citrus fruit from the Riverina region of New South Wales District, the Riverland region of South Australia, and the Sunraysia region in Northwest Victoria District with restrictions.
Under the proposal, APHIS would authorize three additional areas of Australia to export citrus to the United States: the inland region of Queensland, the regions that compose Western Australia, and the shires of Bourke and Narromine within New South Wales District.
California Citrus Mutual says it is meeting with APHIS to discuss the agreement and other pending pacts.
"The increased access if approved comes at a time where southern hemisphere fruit has created overlaps with California production," the organization says on its website.
Pest risk assessment
APHIS scientists say they prepared a pest risk assessment (PRA) and a commodity import evaluation document (CIED). The CIED identifies the phytosanitary measures that could be applied to ensure citrus fruit from new areas of Australia can be safely imported without increasing the risk of introducing pests.
After careful analysis, APHIS officials are proposing to authorize the importation of citrus fruit from additional areas of production in Australia.
To comment, visit: https://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2018-0078.