APHIS Adds Portions of Fort Bend and Harris Counties in Texas to the Domestic Citrus Canker (Xanthomonas spp.) Quarantine Area

Effective immediately, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is expanding the area quarantined for citrus canker in Texas to include additional portions of Fort Bend and Harris Counties to prevent the spread of the disease.

On July 20, 2017, APHIS confirmed the positive identification of citrus canker in one sample collected during a delimiting survey around the existing Richmond Citrus Canker Quarantine area. TDA removed and destroyed the positive citrus canker tree. APHIS completed delimiting surveys around the location and found no other citrus trees positive for citrus canker within the survey area. The Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) has established an intrastate quarantine area for citrus canker that parallels the federal citrus canker regulatory requirements as specified in 7 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) §301.75. Continue reading

APHIS Shares Updated Protocol for Interstate Movement of Citrus Nursery Stock from Quarantined Areas

Based on consultation with stakeholders, APHIS revised the protocol for interstate movement of citrus nursery stock. This protocol, originally published in 2013, contains standards and requirements that a nursery must meet in order to move citrus nursery stock interstate from areas quarantined for citrus canker, citrus greening (huanglongbing, HLB), and/or Asian citrus psyllid (ACP). A nursery would need to meet the standards and requirements to obtain a certificate or limited permit for the interstate movement of citrus nursery stock from areas quarantined for citrus canker, citrus greening, or ACP.

The revised protocol will be effective March 12, 2018. All nurseries shipping from an HLB-quarantine area will be required to ship under the provisions of the previous protocol until mother and increase trees have been tested by APHIS. The Citrus Health Response Program (CHRP) will accept the last state test of the mother tree as long as the test meets APHIS requirements and occurred within the last 12 months.  Mother trees must be tested according to APHIS instructions and in an APHIS-approved lab within 12 months to maintain eligibility for shipment. Continue reading

APHIS Proposes Changes to the Protocol for Interstate Movement of Citrus Nursery Stock from Quarantined Areas

APHIS is proposing to make several changes to the protocol for interstate movement of citrus nursery stock. This protocol, originally published in 2013, contains standards and requirements that a nursery must meet in order to move citrus nursery stock interstate from areas quarantined for citrus canker, citrus greening, and/or Asian citrus psyllid. By meeting the standards and requirements, a nursery would be able to obtain a certificate or limited permit for the interstate movement of citrus nursery stock from areas quarantined for citrus canker, citrus greening, or ACP.

A summary of APHIS’ proposed changes is provided below. The full text of the revised protocol is available on APHIS’ Citrus Health Response Program Web site. APHIS will accept comments on the revised protocol through November 10, 2017. Please email your comments to PPQ.Citrus.Health@aphis.usda.gov. Continue reading

Several Louisiana parishes added to the Domestic Citrus Canker (Xanthomonas spp.) Quarantine Area

Effective immediately, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is expanding the area quarantined for citrus canker in Louisiana.

APHIS established a quarantine on February 10, 2014, (DA-2014-08) following the positive identification of Xanthomonas spp., the bacterial causal agent of citrus canker, from a sweet orange tree located in New Orleans, Louisiana. APHIS further updated this quarantine on June 2, 2016 (DA-2016-35), to add portions of several parishes. Continue reading

Citrus canker regulation dropped; helps with exports

In Southeast Farm Press

The European Union has dropped its requirement that U.S. groves be surveyed for citrus canker, which eases entry of U.S. citrus into the EU market.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative have worked with EU officials over the last 10 years to ensure that the EU’s plant health requirements for citrus are based on scientifically-established risks, according to a joint statement May 3 by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and Acting U.S. Trade Representative Stephen Vaughn. Continue reading

UF creates trees with enhanced resistance to greening

In University of Florida news

by Kimberly Moore Wilmoth, UF/IFAS

After a decade of battling the highly destructive citrus greening bacterium, researchers with the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences have developed genetically modified citrus trees that show enhanced resistance to greening, and have the potential to resist canker and black spot, as well. However, the commercial availability of those trees is still several years away. Continue reading

Texans asked to help keep citrus canker in check

By Rod Santa Ana, Texas A&M AgriLife

After finding citrus canker in the Lower Rio Grande Valley, experts want the public to know the facts of the disease because they can play a big role in limiting its damage.

Dr. Olufemi Alabi, a Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service plant pathologist in Weslaco, said the first thing the public should know is fruit from a tree with citrus canker is safe to eat.

“Citrus canker creates lesions on the stems, leaves and eventually the fruit of citrus trees,” he said. “The fruit is still edible. The blemishes do not affect the internal quality of the fruit, but they do reduce its commercial, fresh fruit marketability.” Continue reading