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Agricultural Quarantines in Borrego Valley

San Diego County, California
16 December 2010

Currently two insect quarantines effect agriculture in the Borrego Valley. The Light Brown Apple Moth (LBAM) California State Interior Quarantine itself does not extend into Borrego, but San Diego County falls into the LBAM Federal Regulated Area as outlined by the LBAM Federal Order. It fell into place over San Diego County after the discovery of moths in the Balboa Park area of San Diego and requires nurseries that ship interstate and crop/orchard lands in San Diego County to have a Compliance Agreement with the California Dept. of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) LBAM Project. The CDFA is required to place traps in valley @ 1 per sq. mi. unless a farm is shipping agriculture products out of state. Then CDFA is required to conduct a one time inspection of the farm(s) and place traps @ 1 trap on every five acres on the farm(s) where the products are grown. There are no restrictions on shipping or required treatment of products themselves. Contact the LBAM Project for further details (760-471-8180) or John Blasius at CDFA (760-831-0409).

The Asian Citrus Pysllid (ACP) quarantine, on the other hand, runs through Borrego Valley, effects citrus and related plants and trees, and has practical consequences.

All lands in the Borrego valley east of Borrego Springs Road (the boundary line) are within the CDFA Asian Citrus Pysllid quarantine. The quarantine has been in effect in the Borrego valley since 11-24-09, when ACP was found along the Imperial and San Diego County line and will continue until CDFA does not find or trap any ACP for approximately two years (4 citrus tree flushings). The ACP is, however, very small (3mm) and very hard to eradicate. It is therefore unlikely that the ACP quarantine will be lifted in the foreseeable future according to the CDFA.

For commercial citrus acreage within the ACP quarantine the regulations are as follows:

  1. Owners of commercial citrus acreage must enter into a compliance agreement with the ACP quarantine Project of the CDFA Pest Exclusion Office;
  2. All harvesters, haulers and packinghouses that may receive the fruit need a compliance agreement with the ACP quarantine Project as well;
  3. If the fruit is taken to a packinghouse or processor inside the quarantine area the fruit does not have to be cleaned;
  4. If the fruit is to be taken outside the quarantine area for packing or processing, the fruit must be commercially cleaned before leaving the quarantine area.

If the fruit is taken to a packing house within the quarantine area for cleaning and packing the quarantine should cause no extra expense. The quarantine project does not charge for its services and the packing house would not have to do an extra cleaning to move the fruit out of the quarantine area.

If the fruit is taken to a packinghouse outside the quarantine area the packinghouse may levy a per bin charge for cleaning.

For nurseries other rules apply:

  1. No citrus plants may leave the quarantine area going to other counties in California.
  2. Citrus plants can be shipped only to states that do not have citrus or other areas already under quarantine for ACP.
  3. All plants must be treated with two pesticides. The cost depends on the pesticide.

For more information about the ACP Quarantine call the CDFA Pest Exclusion Office (619-698-1046) or go to the CDFA website www.cdfa.ca.gov/ and scroll down the page to the Plant Health and Pest Prevention tab.

12.16.2010

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