Moroccan citrus exports to the US resumed last week following a suspension of almost eight months, according to the ONSSA, Morocco’s National Food Safety Office.
The suspension was initiated in February after the discovery of fruit fly larvae in clementine exports to the US, which has a zero tolerance policy for the insect.
Since February, several meetings have taken place between the ONSSA and Aphis, the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, with the two sides agreeing in June to establish an operational action plan for managing the issue.
The plan, which will be followed by everyone involved in Moroccan citrus, includes additional phytosanitary measures to avoid the presence of fruit fly in citrus exports.
Following an inspection by US experts to production sites in Morocco, the provisions of the plan were deemed to have been met, leading Aphis to lift the suspension on 13 October.