Names of some of the Plant Quarantine Stations changed

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Names of some of the Plant Quarantine Stations have been changed vide Gazette notification no. S.O. 2286(E) dated 4th June, 2018

  • National Plant Quarantine Station, New Delhi is renamed as Regional Plant Quarantine Station, New Delhi.


  • Plant Quarantine Station, Bengaluru is renamed as Regional Plant Quarantine Station, Bengaluru for import of seeds, consumption and propagating material.


  • Plant Quarantine Station, Kandla is renamed as Regional Plant Quarantine Station, Kandla for import of consumption materials.

In view of the above increase in Regional stations,

All consignments of seeds and plants for propagation and regulated articles such as live insects, microbial cultures, bio-control agents, soil, growing media (with soil, peat or other organic materials) and peat or sphagnum moss shall only be imported into India through Regional Plant Quarantine Stations, Amritsar, Chennai, Kolkata, Mumbai, New Delhi, Bengaluru or through any other points of entry as may be notified from time to time for this purpose, provided that import of germplasm/ transgenic plant material and genetically modified organisms shall be permitted only through New Delhi Airport.

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Urad, moong imports put in restricted category

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The governmenon Monday put imports of urand moong dal under the restricted category and fixed a cap for its in-bound shipments up to three lakh tonnes.

The move will help in stabilising domestic prices that have fallen below the minimum support level and are hurting farmers.

The Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), under the commerce ministry, also said import of this dal is subject to annual quota of three lakh tonnes.

“Import of urad and moong dal is revised from free to restricted,” the DGFT said in a notification.

It, however, said this restriction will not apply to the government’s import commitments under any bilateral and regional agreement.

Moong production touched a record 2.07 million tonnes (mt) in 2016-17 crop year that ended June as against 1.59 mt in the previous fiscal.

is the world’s largest pulse producer and importer.

Earlier this month, the government had also put imports of pigeon peas and toor dal under the restricted category.

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Canada opens doors to Indian banana, mango, pomegranate

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Canada has opened its markets to Indian fruits and vegetables such as banana, mango, pomegranate, custard apple and okra (bhendi).

The Agricultural & Processed Foods Exports Development Authority (APEDA), in an advisory to exporters here, conveyed Canada’s decision on opening its doors to Indian vegetables and fruits, asking them to tap the North American market.

The shipments will be subject to general phyto-sanitary import requirement and inspection by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

The decision could help revive India’s sagging agri and processed food exports to Canada, which came down to Rs.838 crore in 2016-17 from around Rs.1,046 crore in 2014-15. Fresh vegetable exports to Canada account for Rs.36 crore, while fresh fruit shipments, including grapes, stood at Rs.13.7 crore in 2016-17.

Big potential

Apeda Chairman DK Singh said the Canadian market holds potential for Indian mangoes and pomegranate arils (seed pod). Considering that India is exporting mangoes to the US, exporters could easily tap the neighbouring Canadian market, he said.

Though Canada is an important market, the distance between the two countries has resulted in higher freight charges, especially air freight, for exporters, Singh said.

There is a need to develop sea-freight protocols between the two countries and Apeda proposes to work with R&D centres and labs in this regard.

India’s agri and processed-food exports rose by around 7 per cent in the April-June quarter to Rs.28,320 crore over the corresponding year-ago quarter’s Rs.26,525 crore.

(This article was published in Business Line Newspaper on August 22, 2017)
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India became the third-largest importer of Vietnamese pepper

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India became the third-largest importer of Vietnamese pepper in the January-July period, overtaking the UAE. Much of the Vietnamese export of 3,113 tonnes of pepper to Sri Lanka might have also found its way into the country, Kishor Shamji, a veteran pepper exporter told BusinessLine.

In addition, 2,500 tonnes of Sri Lankan pepper is being shipped to India under the free trade agreement between the neighbours, he said.

On the terminal market, 14 tonnes were traded on Tuesday. Of this four tonnes were from the high ranges and were traded at Rs.490 a kg.

Spot prices remained unchanged at Rs.48,300 (ungarbled) and Rs. 50,300 (garbled) a quintal.

(This article was published on August 22, 2017)
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Draft Plant Quarantine(Regulation of Import into India)(Fifth amendment) Order, 2017

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The Draft Plant Quarantine(Regulation of Import into India)(Fifth amendment) Order, 2017  pertains to further liberalize provisions governing import of 11  items under Schedule VI of PQ Order, 2003 and 2 items under Schedule VII. Peas, chick peas, cow peas, Lentils, Beans, etc. could be imported from Canada by getting treated with phosphine gas @ 3 gm of phosphine gas per Metric Tonne or 3 tablets of Aluminium phosphide of 56% a.i. with 7 days exposure period . Proposed date of its coming into force is 15th July, 2017.

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Revision in National Standards relating to Fumigation and FHAT

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Revision in National Standards relating to Fumigation and FHAT

Directorate of Plant Protection, Quarantine & Storage, Department of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare have revised the National Standards mainly related to Renewal of Accreditation and fees structure. The revised Standards are as follows:-

  1. NSPM 12- Guidelines for Assessment, Audit and Accreditation of Fumigation Agencies for Undertaking Methyl Bromide Fumigation;
  2.  NSPM 22- Guidelines for Assessment, Audit and Accreditation of Fumigation Agencies for Undertaking Aluminium Phosphide Fumigation;
  3. NSPM 9- Guidelines   for     Certification         of       Forced        Hot-Air       Treatment Facilities for Wood Packaging Material
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India, Vietnam call truce in trade spat; Delhi pledges pest-free goods New Delhi, March 28:

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India, Vietnam call truce in trade spat; Delhi pledges pest-free goods

New Delhi, March 28:

India has decided to extend the hand of reconciliation to Vietnam to avoid a repetition of a recent spat which both countries banning each other’s farm products, including coffee beans and peanuts.

Agriculture Ministry officials have assured their Vietnamese counterparts that India will take corrective action to ensure that Vietnam’s concerns relating to the presence of live pests in farm consignments from India are addressed, an Agriculture Ministry official told BusinessLine.

Vietnam recently banned the import of five agriculture products from India, which would have been effective from June 2017, but after New Delhi retaliated by placing an immediate ban on six Vietnamese products, including coffee, on March 7, it revoked its order.

“We do not want to come across as arm-twisting our trade partners, although we have ourselves been arm-twisted for long,” the official said. “We have assured Vietnam that we will take corrective action to make our consignments pest-free and we are in talks on the same.”

The corrective measures would include identifying the problem (to establish if just one or two companies were exporting pest-infested products or if it was more widespread), tightening of inspection of fumigation facilities and export procedures.

Since New Delhi, too, has revoked its ban on Vietnamese products, the South East Asian country has similarly said it will address India’s concerns, the official added.

The problem started four weeks ago, when Vietnam announced it would suspend import of peanuts, cassia seed, cocoa beans, haricot beans and tamarind from India as it had found live insects in consignments shipped from here.

Days later, India issued an order temporarily suspending the entry of coffee beans, bamboo, black pepper, cinnamon, cassia and dragon fruits from Vietnam, claiming repeated interception of quarantine pests.

However, since India announced the implementation of the ban with immediate effect, Indian coffee producers were impacted at once.

There were also expressions of concern from Vietnamese exporters who had their consignments waiting to be shipped at ports.

“Since business from both sides was getting hurt, the two countries decided to call a truce and lift the ban. Our trading partners have to trust us when we assure them that we are putting in place the processes to ensure pest-free consignments,” the official said.

Vietnam had earlier suspended imports of peanuts from India in April 2015. The ban was lifted in January 2016 after a Vietnamese delegation visited India and inspected fumigation facilities, export procedures and the export certification system for peanuts.


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Indian Mangoes would now go to Australia as well

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Melbourne, April 24:

Indian mangoes, including Alphonso and Kesar, could soon be exported to Australia, thanks to revised protocols that allow for imports from India as long as the produce has been irradiated.

The riders

According to Robert Gray from the Australian Mango Industry Association, mango imports from India this year could be of the order of 200-300 tonnes.

The Indian mangoes will, however, be for sale outside of the Australian mango season.

“Our position is that, as part of global trade, if we want access to other countries around the world (to export Australian mangoes), and providing the protocol is safe and not bringing in any pests or diseases, we’re supportive of other countries having access to our market,” said Gray.

India could not export mangoes to Australia until now due to tough phyto-sanitary conditions that require irradiation treatment and inspection prior to the shipment.

But with the rules being tweaked, mango farmers in India are getting ready to take advantage of the opportunity.

New opportunity

“We have been primarily exporting to the US and the UK, but now with the Australian market opening up, we have another opportunity,” said a mango grower in Maharashtra.

This could be good news for mango farmers in Maharashtra’s coastal districts of Ratnagiri and Sindhudurg, home to the famed Alphonso mangoes, which are facing depressed prices.

Mango farmers’ problems have been compounded by arrivals of Alphonso look-alikes from Karnataka; the fruit looks similar to Alphonso, but tastes very different.

Karnataka mangoes actually cost about ₹150 per dozen, but get sold as Alphonso with prices in the range of ₹600-900.


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