The U.S. Department of Agriculture has taken a step toward approving imports of large Peruvian mangoes.

USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has determined that hot-water treatments are an effective way of preventing fruit fly infestations in mangoes weighing more than 650 grams, according to a June 3 letter from Alan Dowdy, APHIS assistant deputy administrator, to Peru’s Ministry of Agriculture.

Large Peruvian fruit treated in a 110-minute hot-water bath, followed by hydro-cooling, is an effective way of treating fruit for export to the U.S., according to the letter.

APHIS will now publish its report for public comment, after which the agency will issue a final notice on whether to allow large Peruvian mangoes to be imported.

Peruvian officials first raised the issue of exporting larger mangoes to the U.S. several years ago, said William Watson, executive director of the Orlando, Fla.-based National Mango Board.

Larger mangoes have become more desirable as the popularity of fresh-cut mangoes at retail has grown, Watson said.