US: National Potato Council warns of ‘serious threat to the industry’ if potatoes are imported from the UK

Image result for potato fieldLast week, the National Potato Council (NPC) in the US provided comments to USDA APHIS on the recent pest risk assessment for the importation of potatoes from the United Kingdom to the US. NPC emphasized concern over six pests that would threaten the industry. The introduction of these pests into the US would “substantially harm US potato production and could cost the industry tens of millions in lost export revenue”, the NPC warns. The pests of concern are: Dickeya solani, Meloidogyne minor, Synchytrium endobioticum, Ralstonia solanaceum, Globodera pallida and Globodera rostochiensis. NPC urged APHIS to approach the discussion with the U.K. with extreme caution. This public release of the pest risk assessment is a step in the process for considering whether these products can safely be imported into the US.  The NPC says at this point, no determination has been made whether the pest and disease threats can be reasonably mitigated. (Source: NPC)