Chilean blueberries from three regions must now be fumigated with methyl bromide at field temperature, part of emergency measures set by the U.S. Department of Agriculture after European grapevine moth detections.
Mandatory fumigation started Dec. 26 on fruit from the O’Higgins, Maule and Bio-Bio regions. Product inspections at destination will also be increased, according to Chile’s Agriculture and Livestock Service, or SAG.
The moth was detected in blueberries during inspections in the O’Higgins and Maule regions.
Chilean agriculture minister Luis Mayol sent a technical team to Washington, D.C., for meetings with the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. If needed, Mayol would travel to meet with Tom Vilsack, U.S. agriculture secretary, according to a news release.
The technical team was led by Octavio Herrera and Miguel Pena, heads of SAG’s agriculture and international divisions, respectively.