The California Department of Food and Agriculture announced that the delayed citrus tarping regulation that was slated to take effect in early March will now begin in April. The bulk citrus safeguarding requires shipments to be fully covered. CDFA said there are several ways for the industry to be compliant with the new regulation and enforcement will begin Monday, April 3.
AgNet West talked to Citrus Pest and Disease Prevention Program Grower Liaison Erin Betts in March about the regulation. “That regulation is stating that every load, regardless of origin or destination, must be tarped,” she said. “You don’t have to use a tarp. You can use a van or something that is completely covered on all four sides, down to the bed.” Get the full story.
Fines for not being compliant can be costly. “The fine is not only for if you don’t have your load tarped properly, but also if you do not have your compliance agreement with you,” Betts said. “That violation could be up to $10,000.” Get the full story.
When the regulation was delayed in early March, Tulare County Agricultural Commissioner Marylin Kinoshita said growers should still get compliant with the new rules because the enforcement would be coming soon. “Unless you have access by a dirt road to a packing shed, this requirement applies to everybody — fruit peddlers, guys with a bin of fruit in the back of their pickup, everybody,” she said. Get the full story.
From Citrus Insider.org:
The California Department of Food and Agriculture announces enforcement of the new bulk citrus safeguarding regulation will begin Monday, April 3, 2017. At that time, all entities involved in growing, transporting/hauling or packing/processing bulk citrus fruit must be operating under the terms of the new compliance agreement.
Under the new regulation, all bulk citrus loads must be safeguarded if moving from “or within” an Asian citrus psyllid quarantine area. This can be done in several ways, including but not limited to: the use of a shipping container, tarp, enclosed vehicle, curtain van, or another method that completely covers bulk citrus during transport. If using a tarp, tarps must reach the bed of the truck.
Safeguarding will be enforced by CDFA, county agriculture departments and local law enforcement, and can occur at origin, during transit or at a truck’s final destination. Vehicles with improper tarping or enclosure may be stopped and cited for regulation violation. Each vehicle must have a copy of their compliance agreement. Failure to provide the required compliance agreement is also a violation. Penalties for non-compliance may be assessed by the state or county and can include fines as high as $10,000 per violation, and potentially also include revocation of the compliance agreement.
The new rule is in response to a recommendation from the Citrus Pest & Disease Prevention Committee to prevent the spread of the Asian citrus psyllid. If you have not received a compliance agreement or have questions, regional contact information is below. Click here to read a bulk citrus safeguarding Q&A.
Cooperative Asian Citrus Psyllid Program Office Contacts
Palm Desert: 760/773-0941
San Diego: 619/295-2913