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Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service logo Fruits and Vegetables Import Requirements (FAVIR)
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Commodity Import Report (CIR)

Dragon Fruit/Pitahaya/Pitaya (Fruit) from Ecuador into Continental U.S. Ports
The CIR contains current import regulation information for the selected Commodity Import (a specific commodity approved from a designated country, or region, into one or more designated ports). A flag ( Access Restricted to APHIS/CBP ) indicates information that is intended for and available to an APHIS/CBP audience only.
Acanthocereus spp., Cereus spp., Echinocereus spp., Escontria spp., Hylocereus spp., Myrtillocactus spp., Stenocereus spp. Commodity Summary Guide Page Country Summary

Import Requirements
1 Admissible Plant Parts: Fruit
2 Admissible Ports: Continental U.S. Ports
3 Import Permit Required: An Import Permit is required. To obtain a permit, go to e-Permits.
4 Subject to Inspection: This commodity is subject to inspection at the port of entry and all general requirements of 7 CFR 319.56-3.
5 Commercial Consignments Only
6 Phytosanitary Certificate: Consignments must be accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate issued by the National Plant Protection Organization (NPPO) of the country of origin with an additional declaration stating the consignment was produced and prepared for export in accordance with the requirements authorized under 7 CFR 319.56-4.
7 Port Restriction: Do not import or distribute into or within Hawaii, Puerto Rico, or any U.S. territory.
8 Species-Specific Limitations: Dragon fruit has many different scientific names. Refer to the "List of Scientific Names of Admissible Dragon Fruit" for a list of alternate scientific names.
Instructions for Officers
9 Refer to the Table of Phytosanitary Certificate Additional Declaration Language to determine acceptable additional declaration language for specific country/commodity combinations. restricted image
Commodity Information
10 For additional commodity information and images, visit https://npgsweb.ars-grin.gov/gringlobal/taxonomydetail.aspx?id=19487  
Additional Requirements
11 Fresh dragon fruit (also known as pitahaya/pitaya) (Hylocereus spp., Acanthocereus spp., Cereus spp., Echinocereus spp., Escontria spp., Myrtillocactus spp., and Stenocereus spp.) from Ecuador may be imported into the continental United States only under the conditions described in this section. These conditions are designed to prevent the introduction of the following quarantine pest: Anastrepha fraterculus (Widemann), South American fruit fly.

General requirements

The National Plant Protection Organization (NPPO) of Ecuador must provide an operational workplan to APHIS that details activities that the NPPO of Ecuador will, subject to APHIS’s approval of the workplan, carry out to meet the requirements of this section. The operational workplan must include and describe the specific requirements as set forth in this section.

Production site requirements

All production sites participating in the dragon fruit/pitahaya/pitaya export program must be approved by and registered with the NPPO of Ecuador in accordance with the operational workplan.

Trees and other structures, other than the crop itself, must not shade the crop during the day. Dragon fruit/pitahaya/pitayafruit that has fallen on the ground must be removed from the place of production at least once every 7 days and may not be included in field containers of fruit to be packed for export. Harvested dragon fruit/pitahaya/pitaya must be placed in field cartons or containers marked to show the place of production so traceback is possible.

The production sites must be inspected prior to each harvest by the NPPO of Ecuador or its approved designee in accordance with the operational workplan. An approved designee is an entity with which the NPPO of Ecuador creates a formal agreement allowing that entity to certify the appropriate procedures have been followed. If APHIS or the NPPO of Ecuador finds a place of production is not complying with the requirements of the systems approach, no fruit from the place of production will be eligible for export to the continental United States until APHIS and the NPPO of Ecuador conduct an investigation and appropriate remedial actions have been implemented.

The registered production sites must conduct trapping for the fruit fly A. fraterculus at each production site in accordance with the operational workplan. Personnel conducting the trapping and pest surveys must be hired, trained, and supervised by the NPPO of Ecuador. The trapping must begin at least 1 year before harvest begins and continue through the completion of harvest.

If more than an average of 0.07 A. fraterculus per trap per day is trapped for more than 2 consecutive weeks, the production site will be ineligible for export until the rate of capture drops to less than that average. If levels exceed that average per trap per day, from 2 months prior to harvest to the end of the shipping season, the production site will be prohibited from shipping under the systems approach until APHIS and the NPPO of Ecuador both agree the pest risk has been mitigated. As conditions warrant, the average number of A. fraterculus per trap per day may be raised or lowered if jointly agreed to between APHIS and the NPPO of Ecuador in the operational workplan.

The NPPO of Ecuador must maintain records of trap placement, checking of traps, and any quarantine pest captures in accordance with the operational workplan. Trapping records must be maintained for APHIS review for at least 1 year.

Packinghouse requirements

The NPPO of Ecuador must monitor packinghouse operations to verify the packinghouses are complying with the requirements of the systems approach. If the NPPO of Ecuador finds a packinghouse is not complying with the requirements of the systems approach, no dragon fruit/pitahaya/pitaya fruit from the packinghouse will be eligible for export to the continental United States until APHIS and the NPPO of Ecuador conduct an investigation and both agree the pest risk has been mitigated.

All packinghouses participating in the dragon fruit/pitahaya/pitaya export program must be registered with the NPPO of Ecuador.

The dragon fruit/pitahaya/pitaya fruit must be packed within 24 hours of harvest in a pest-exclusionary packinghouse. The dragon fruit/pitahaya/pitaya shipment must be safeguarded by an insect-proof mesh screen or plastic tarpaulin while in transit to the packinghouse and while awaiting packing. These safeguards must remain intact until arrival in the continental United States or the consignment will be denied entry.

During the time the packinghouse is in use for exporting dragon fruit/pitahaya/pitaya fruit to the continental United States, the packinghouse may only accept dragon fruit/pitahaya/pitaya fruit from registered production sites.

Phytosanitary inspection

A biometric sample of dragon fruit/pitahaya/pitaya fruit (jointly agreed upon by APHIS and the NPPO of Ecuador) must be inspected in Ecuador by the NPPO of Ecuador following post-harvest processing. The biometric sample must be visually inspected for any quarantine pests, and a portion of the fruit will be cut open if signs of A. fraterculus are observed.

Dragon fruit/pitahaya/pitaya fruit presented for inspection at the port of entry to the United States must be identified in the shipping documents accompanying each lot of fruit to specify the production site or sites in which the fruit was produced and the packinghouse or houses in which the fruit was processed, in accordance with the requirements in the operational workplan. This identification must be maintained until the fruit is released for entry into the continental United States. The dragon fruit/pitahaya/pitaya fruit are subject to inspection at the port of entry for all quarantine pests of concern, including A. fraterculus. If a single larva of A. fraterculus is found in a shipment from a place of production (either by the NPPO of Ecuador or by inspectors at the continental United States port of entry), the entire lot of fruit will be prohibited from importation into the continental United States, and the place of production of that fruit will be suspended from the export program until appropriate measures agreed upon by the NPPO of Ecuador and APHIS have been taken.
Page ID: CIRReportP
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