To Our Valued Customers,
Following a request by the quarantine organization of South Africa, USDA-APHIS approved an irradiation facility in that country in February 2012. Table grapes (Vitis vinifera) will be the first commodity to be irradiated and shipped to the United States. Other commodities will be approved for irradiation treatment on a case-by-case basis.
Grapes from South Africa were previously admissible with an efficacious cold treatment. This action adds irradiation as another efficacious treatment option, in addition to the cold treatment option.
Irradiation and cold treatment are one part of a systems approach to mitigate the pest risk associated with consignments of table grapes from South Africa, and also includes requiring a preclearance inspection by USDA personnel in South Africa, allowing the shipment of commercial consignments only, and requiring a phytosanitary inspection by the quarantine organization of South Africa with an Additional Declaration stating that the consignment has been inspected and found free of pests.
Consignments of grapes may begin arriving into the United States in March, 2012. An updated plant product permit is required to import irradiated grapes from South Africa.
If you have any questions, please contact us at 305-471-8989.