Citrus greening quarantine areas to expand in California
The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has announced it is expanding the areas quarantined for Huanglongbing (HLB; citrus greening) in California, with immediate effect.
HLB, which is spread by Asian citrus psyllid (ACP) transmitting the bacteria to the tree when feeding on new shoots, is the most serious citrus disease and has been present in Florida since 1998.
More recently, it was detected in plant tissue samples collected from multiple locations during routine surveys in California. As a result, APHIS, in cooperation with the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA), has decided to take action.
APHIS will add portions of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties, with the CDFA merging the HLB quarantine boundaries and thus creating a single HLB quarantine.
In addition, APHIS is establishing a quarantine in a portion of San Diego County, further expanding the already existing quarantine area there.
There is no cure for HLB and all commercial varieties of citrus are susceptible to it. Therefore, in citrus-producing areas with little or no HLB incidence, early detection and removal of infected trees, as well as control of the ACP vector, are critical to prevent the spread of the disease to non-infested areas of the U.S. and to maintain productive citrus.
APHIS is applying safeguarding measures on the interstate movement of regulated articles from the quarantined areas in California. These measures parallel the intrastate quarantine that CDFA established. Entire states such as Florida, Louisiana, Georgia, Texas, among others, are currently in quarantine.
The specific changes to the quarantined areas in California are attached and can also be found at: http://www.aphis.usda.gov/plant-health/citrus-greening