The delegation was given a comprehensive briefing through presentations by the APHIS side on Agriculture Quarantine Inspection, Plant Protection & Pest Identification by the Customs & Border Protection at the Port of Chicago. This was followed by a visit to the USDA approved fruit irradiation facility at Sioux City IOWA (M/s SADEX Corporation). However, the process of certification, re-certification and audit of irradiation facility will require some time.To process export of mango to USA during this season, there were two viable options available. These included (i) the establishment of pre-clearance programme from National Plant Protection Organization /MINFA along with an Operational Work Plan for commodities shipped through pre-clearance to meet APHIS Phytosanitary entry requirements and (ii) consignments may be treated in US for mitigation of mango pest risks pending approval of pre-clearance programme. The latter appeared to be quicker. The mango shipment will be irradiated at IOWA irradiation facility in USA. It was also agreed in principle that initially mango producers certified under Global Gap with experience of produce export markets may be considered under this programme.
The Pakistan Horticulture Development and Export Company would act as cooperator in both cases. Such a measure would open the gates for marketing of Pakistani mangoes in US market this season. It will also help the economic masters to carryout economic analysis and feasibility study to assess the potential and scope to market mangoes from Pakistan to US. The mangoes treated at the US plant (only for this season) will also give a feel of the market response to Pakistani mangoes which will further help to plan out a sustainable and viable mango export strategy.
In the wrap up meeting, both the sides expressed their desire to enhance collaboration between APHIS/USDA and NPPO/NAPHIS, MINFA in exchange of information and technical expertise aimed to exploit the opportunities and possibilities, through creation of an enabling environment and expressed their satisfaction with progress made under the Framework Equivalency Work Plan (FEWP) signed between the two countries. The FEWP was also renewed by both the sides during the visit. The co-operation between the two countries reflects the level of confidence building with exists between the US and Pakistan and is a symbol of friendship between the peoples of both the countries.
It is now hoped that the comment period expires in Mid August in USA and the Pakistani side shall gear up for 1st trial shipment in Late August 2010.
The APHIS, USDA has published the notification to allow Pakistani mangoes into their Federal Register. If no negative comments appeared from any US Agency or Private Sector, the comment period will expire on 16 August and USDA will officially notify to allow import of mangoes from Pakistan.
A test consignment will be undertaken from Government to Government, of course in association with commercial operators under the “Domestic Irradiation programme for the year 2010” which means that Pakistani mango trial consignment of 1300 Kg will be shipped to USA and it will be irradiated in their Irradiation facility at IOWA.
The Pakistani NPPO i.e., DPP, is in process to notify the orchards which will be used for export of mangoes to USA.
The NPPO is registering the Pack house of the exporter for quality and food safety standards compliance
The mango consignment will follow SOP’s for handling, packing and export which have been mutually developed and conveyed to APHIS, USDA by NPPO
The PARAS Food as Irradiation facility will be approved by APHIS Inspector next year which will allow export of mangoes from Pakistan under the supervision of APHIS Inspectors from the mango season 2011.
The Pakistani side is now preparing for test consignment to USA during last week of August. Possible route will be: Orchard (Lodhran)–PARAS Foods Irradiation Facility Lahore–Lahore Airport–Chicago Aiport–Irradiation Facility Iwoa USA–Pakistan Mission in USA.
The Embassy of Pakistan Washington will be consignee.
Pursuant to agreement in principle allowing Pakistan mango access to USA market, a delegation from Pakistan visited the USA from 8-18 May, 2010 on the invitation from Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). The tour was facilitated by the Foreign Agriculture Service of APHIS in Pakistan through the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Government of Pakistan. During the visit to USA the delegation held discussions with the counterparts USDA experts on the organizational structure of APHIS and its regulatory process, US irradiation treatment programme and studied the irradiation pre- clearance programme. Comprehensive presentations were also made by the Pakistani delegates on the role and functions of DPP, Pakistan Horticulture Development and Export Company and the status of M/s PARAS Foods (Pvt.) Ltd as an approved facility for irradiation of mangoes in Pakistan. The Pakistani side had already provided list of mutually agreed Pest Risk Analysis to the USDA as a step towards allowing market access for Pakistani mangoes to US.
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