The U.S. Department of Agriculture has lifted an entry ban on fresh mangoes from several Philippines regions after determining fruit there is free of weevil pests.
The action by the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service on Oct. 1 finalized a rule proposed in April.
Previously, only mangoes grown on the island of Guimaras could be imported to the mainland U.S. Guimaras was earlier established as free of mango seed weevil and pulp weevil. Fruit from everywhere else in the Philippines – except Palawan – had access to Hawaii and Guam only.
The Philippines government asked for recognition of Luzon, the Visayas and Mindanao as free of the two pests.
The USDA also determined that the mango pulp weevil can be neutralized with a lower dose of irradiation than the generic dose for plant pests. A dose specific to the seed weevil already existed. The new rule permits imports that are either from regions free of both pests, or treated with the specific doses.
In 2013, the U.S. imported 155 metric tons of mangoes worth $424,000 from the Philippines, up from 50 metric tons worth $118,000 in 2009, according to the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service.