Hass Avocado Triumph: USDA Lifts California Oriental Fruit Fly Quarantine


In a significant development for avocado growers, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has removed hass avocados from the Oriental Fruit Fly quarantine list in California, a move hailed by the California Avocado Commission (CAC). This decision, announced in a recent news release, follows a successful petition by the CAC and marks a major victory for the avocado industry in the state.

Group of Hass avocados, one cut open to reveal the pit

The quarantine was initially established on September 27 by the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, in conjunction with the California Department of Food and Agriculture. It covered key avocado production areas in San Bernardino and Riverside Counties. The inclusion of Hass avocados as a host in this quarantine was a point of contention, as it contradicted the USDA’s lists for other fruit flies, like the Mediterranean and Mexican Fruit Flies, where Hass avocados were not listed as hosts.

Recognizing the inconsistency, the CAC acted swiftly, bringing this to the USDA’s attention. Their efforts paid off when, on October 27, the USDA amended the host list, excluding hass avocados from the Oriental Fruit Fly quarantine.

Ken Melban, the CAC’s Vice President of Industry Affairs and Operations, emphasized the significance of this decision in the release. “The removal of the previously mandatory treatment requirements for fruit on trees within the quarantine area will result in significant savings for hass avocado growers within the quarantine area,” he stated. This change is expected to alleviate financial and operational burdens on growers, enhancing the industry’s efficiency and profitability.

Ken Melban
Credits to: m.andnowuknow.com

It is important to note that other avocado varieties, such as Bacon and Zutano, within the quarantine area are still subject to the established treatment protocols. Hass avocados, like other varieties, must adhere to approved regulatory measures concerning harvest, shipping, and packing from within the Oriental Fruit Fly quarantine region.

The CAC is also engaging with the USDA to address the status of Hass avocados in the Queensland Fruit Fly quarantine, which affects parts of Los Angeles and Ventura counties. The commission remains dedicated to collaborating with USDA and CDFA to balance the necessary safeguards against fruit fly spread with the operational needs of California’s premium avocado production.

“California avocado growers are committed to providing customers with consistently reliable avocados in season,” Melban concluded, reflecting the industry’s dedication to quality and consumer satisfaction.

This development is a testament to the effective advocacy of the California Avocado Commission and marks a positive step forward for the state’s avocado industry.

Forestry Author


Leave your comment

Please enter your name.
Please provide a valid email address.
Please type your comment.