The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently announced that Japan has granted market access for California plums. The announcement comes after several rounds of negotiations between the U.S. and Japan, centered on phytosanitary issues. California Fresh Fruit Association (CFFA) President Ian Lemay said that open access to the Japanese market represents a “significant opportunity for California plums.” Gaining access to Japan has been a decade-long process for California plums, which was somewhat hindered by the COVID-19 pandemic.
CFFA has extended its appreciation to the negotiators and experts from the USDA Animal Plant Health Inspection Service and Agricultural Research Service, as well as the Fresno and Tulare County Ag Commissioner offices for helping to move the process forward. Access to the Japanese market will be contingent upon strict packing and fumigation protocols for California plums. However, expectations are for a smooth export process given the success of the existing California nectarine program for Japan.
Listen to the radio report below.