Under a new proposal, kiwifruit imported from Chile would not have to be fumigated with methyl bromide.
In a proposed rule published in the Oct. 16 Federal Register, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service recommends that methyl bromide treatments of U.S.-bound Chilean kiwifruit be replaced with a systems approach to pest prevention.
Under a systems approach, fruit would have to be grown in a place of production registered with the Government of Chile and certified as having a low prevalence of brevipalpus chilensis, an invasive pest.
In addition, fruit would have to undergo pre-harvest sampling at the registered production site, and following post-harvest processing, fruit would have to be inspected in Chile at an approved inspection site.
Each consignment of fruit would need to be accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate with an additional declaration stating that the fruit had been found free of brevipalpus chilensis.
APHIS will receive comments on the proposed rule through Dec. 15 before issuing a final rule.
In 2013, Chile exported about 75 million pounds of kiwifruit to the U.S., according to USDA.