The U.S. Department of Agriculture has given the green light for avocado imports from Peru.

U.S. approves Peruvian avocado imports

In the Jan. 4 edition of the Federal Register, the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service announced that Peruvian hass avocados will be allowed in effective Feb. 3 if they meet an inspection protocol.

Fruit must be accompanied by a phytosanitary certification with an additional declaration stating it was grown and packed in areas that are pest-free or that are being treated for Mediterranean fruit fly infestation.

In January 2009, APHIS published a proposed rule adding Peru to the list of countries permitted to ship hass avocados to the U.S.

Importers and industry officials have estimated that Peru could add 10% to the amount of avocados shipped in the U.S. in the deal’s first year alone. The Peruvian Avocado Growers Association  has estimated that about 19,000 metric tons of fruit would be exported to the U.S. in the deal's first year.

That would account for about 9% of all avocado exports to the U.S. About 18% of all hass exports worldwide come from Peru. Peruvian avocados are typically harvested from May to September.

The USDA has estimated that the addition of Peru could lower avocado prices in the U.S. by up to 4%.