Irradiation changes to help South Asian mangoes, traders claim
Pakistani and Indian mango exports to the U.S. should benefit from the proposal to allow more irradiation centers in southern states, industry figures have claimed.
U.S. importer Mangozz.com owner Jaidev Sharma, welcomed the move even though he said he didn’t expect import overheads to be reduced by new treatment facilties.
“In terms of cost it might not change much but I think it’s a good thing; it gives us us more options and flexibility and if they can extend this to other fruit that would be good.”
He said it might not be until next year that there would be a noticeable difference as imports from India had finished with Pakistan finishing in September.
A new irradiation center in Gulfport, Mississippi, is expected to open in August.
Exporter Harvest Tradings-Pakistan chief executive offer Ahmad Jawad said the development was a positive step.
“Once the irradiation units increase, automatically prices for irradiation will come down in order to compete with each other, which will be a big comfort for mango buyers.”
Sharma added he was optimistic U.S. authorities would eventually approve phytosanitary requirements for importing Indian pomegranates.
The states that will now be allowed to establish irradiation centres include: Alabama, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia.
The U.S. Animal Plant and Inspection Service (APHIS) announced it planned to allow irradiation treatment centers in 15 Southern states by Aug. 20.
Currently, the only irradiation facility available to treat Pakistani mangoes is run by Sadex Corporation in Iowa, which charges by the hour rather than volume making small imports pricey.