For fresh fruit and vegetable marketing and distribution in Asia
Liam O’Callaghan

BY LIAM O’CALLAGHAN

Japan increases US import inspections

With Covid-19 travel restrictions preventing in-country inspections Japan upped its on-arrival inspections of US fresh produce

Japan increases US import inspections

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Japan will conduct more on-arrival inspections of fruit imported from the US as Covid-19 travel restrictions have prevented inspectors from visiting production areas.

According to the USDA, Japan will temporarily increase inspections of fresh cherries, mangoes, papayas, nectarines, prunes and fresh potatoes until Japanese inspectors are able to travel to the US.

Market access for these six items of US fresh produce is conditional on annual on-site phytosanitary inspections, which have been prevented for the 2020 growing season.

To ensure these fruits can still be traded, Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) has introduced these new measures until a time that inspectors can travel to the US without restrictions such as two-week self-quarantine.

This not the first case of uncertainty created by Covid-19, Vietnamese importers expressed concerns they would not be able to send lychees to Japan due to the same problem.

However, once travel restrictions eased Japanese inspectors were able to facilitate the first shipment of lychee.

China has also requested more documentation from exporters to help it facilitate increased inspections in China.

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