Farmers in areas infested with the Oriental fruit fly will now require a removal permit to move fruit from their areas to non-infested areas. This is according to the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries after it amended the Control Measures R.110 of 27 January 1984.
According to DAFF, the amendments are not limited to farmers but affect any user of land and/or landowner including any individual, municipal authorities, traditional authorities, community members, fruit and vegetable industries, universities and any other role players. In its statement, DAFF said the purpose of the amendment is to strengthen the regulatory framework to prevent and combat the spread of the Oriental fruit fly within the country.
Affected areas include Limpopo, Mpumalanga, North West, Gauteng and some parts of KwaZulu-Natal.
“In terms of the amendments stipulated in the R.1271 of 17 November 2017, Government Gazette No. 41257, the status of the Oriental fruit fly in South Africa is as follows: The ‘areas that are not infested’ include the Western Cape, Northern Cape, Eastern Cape, Free State and some parts of KwaZulu-Natal such as the Magisterial Districts of Amajuba, uMgungundlovu, uMzinyathi, uThukela and Zululand,” DAFF said.
“However, it should be noted that should the pest be detected in a farm within the pest-free areas, such a farm will be quarantined in terms of an official order and a removal permit will be required to move host material to a pest free area”.
In terms of the Control Measures R.110 of 27 January 1984, Government Gazette 41257, no person in South Africa is allowed to move any Oriental fruit fly infested fruit or material from an infested area to a non-infested area without authorisation by means of a removal permit; any unauthorised movement may lead to the spread of the Oriental fruit fly.
“Any transgression of these measures would be considered an offence and violators shall be subjected to penalties. It is worth noting that the removal permit will be issued only if the relevant applicant/land user complied with the stipulated good agricultural practices as per the issued official order and the fruit or material has been found to be free of infestation, following an on-farm/ on-site inspection,” said DAFF.
Anyone intending to move Oriental fruit fly host fruit/material from an infested area to a non-infested area should seek guidance from DAFF’s Inspection Services staff responsible for the following: issuing of an official order with a prescribed list of on-farm good agricultural practices, rendering the on-farm/ on-site inspections and the issuing of removal permits. The relevant officials can be reached at telephone numbers 012 309 8735/ 8791/ 8763, or alternatively send an e-mail to RemovalPermits@daff.gov.za
All affected parties can contact Mr Maanda Rambauli, Manager: Policies, Norms and Standards (Directorate Plant Health) for technical enquiries. Contact details Tel.: (012) 319 6164 E-mail: MaandaR@daff.gov.za