IRVINE, Calif. (November 6, 2023) – On September 27, 2023, the United States Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and the California Department of Food and Agriculture established an Oriental Fruit Fly (OFF) quarantine in San Bernardino and Riverside Counties, California.
The OFF quarantine area, which includes avocado production regions, listed Hass avocados as a host, which was inconsistent with USDA’s Mediterranean Fruit Fly and Mexican Fruit Fly host lists that do not include Hass avocados. California Avocado Commission BB #:145028 staff immediately informed USDA of this inconsistency, which led USDA to remove Hass avocado from the host list on October 27, 2023.
“The removal of the previously mandatory treatment requirements for fruit on trees within the quarantine area will result in significant savings for Hass avocado growers within the quarantine area,” said Ken Melban, CAC vice president of industry affairs and operations.
Other avocado varieties (e.g., Bacon, Zutano, etc.) within the OFF quarantine area are still required to follow the established treatment protocols. As with Mediterranean Fruit Fly and Mexican Fruit Fly quarantines, the harvest, shipping and packing of Hass avocados from within the OFF quarantine region must comply with approved regulatory measures.
The grower requirements for Hass avocado production within the OFF quarantine zone will mirror the requirements for Mexican Fruit Fly quarantine areas. In addition, the requirements for packing houses receiving Hass avocados from the quarantine area(s) will mirror the Mexican Fruit Fly requirements.
The Commission also is working with USDA to remove Hass avocados as a host for the Queensland Fruit Fly quarantine, which currently includes parts of Los Angeles and Ventura Counties. CAC will continue to work with USDA and CDFA on these fruit fly quarantines to ensure the harvest and transportation of fruit from within quarantine areas maintains the necessary safeguards to prevent the spread of the fruit fly while not creating unnecessary burdens on premium California avocado production.
“California avocado growers are committed to providing customers with consistently reliable avocados in season,” said Melban.
About the California Avocado Commission
Created in 1978, the California Avocado Commission strives to enhance the premium positioning of California avocados through advertising, promotion and public relations, and engages in related industry activities. California avocados are cultivated with uncompromising dedication to quality and freshness, by about 3,000 growers in the Golden State. The California Avocado Commission serves as the official information source for California avocados and the California avocado industry. Visit CaliforniaAvocado.com.