PH young coconuts set to enter U.S. market 

PH young coconuts set to enter U.S. market 

/ 04:08 AM May 30, 2019

WASHINGTON, D.C. — “Young coconuts (buko) from the Philippines may now be exported through all ports in the United States,” the countries’ officials reported.


Dr. Josyline Javelosa, the Philippine Agriculture Attaché to the United States, said the export permission was confirmed with the U.S. government.

Javelosa joined the May 22-23 bilateral meeting between Plant Health Officers of the Philippines and U.S. officials at the United States Department Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health and Inspection Service (USDA-APHIS) headquarters at Riverdale, Maryland.


Exit meeting with USDA-APHIS Deputy Administrator Osama El-Lissy (Center). CONTRIBUTED

In the meeting, Dr. Jill Wallace, Head of the U.S. delegation and Deputy Director of Phytosanitary Issues Management (PIM), confirmed that young coconuts from the Philippines that are immature/green, and with 75% or more of outer shell surface of the husk removed, can be inspected and released to the U.S. market as authorized under 7 CFR 319.56.

George Culaste, Head of the Philippine Delegation and Director of the Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI) welcomed this development and said the Philippine young coconut producers, especially in Mindanao, are waiting to tap export markets such as the USA and China.

Other issues discussed included the Philippine request for the access of its okra to the U.S. market; Philippine proposal to have the U.S. waive pre-clearance requirements for Philippine fresh mango exports; U.S. request for its blueberries to access the Philippine market; and the two countries’ respective initiatives with regard to Export Certification and Electronic Phytosanitary Certificates and observance of the 2020 International Year of Plant Health.

USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue (fifth from left) with participants of the Philippines-United States Phytosanitary Issues Bilateral Meeting held on May 22-23in Maryland and Washington D.C. (left to right): Manila-based APHIS International Services Director George Ball; Manila-based APHIS agriculture scientist Wilhelmina Santos; Philippine BPI National Plant Quarantine Services Chief Andres Alemania; Philippine Agriculture Attaché’ to the United States Dr. Josyline C. Javelosa; USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue; APHIS-PIM Assistant Trade Director for the Philippines Dr. Sheauchi Cheng; Philippine BPI Director George Culaste; Philippine BPI Agriculturist Ellaine Molon; APHIS-PIM Deputy Director Jill Wallace; APHIS Trade Support Team Member Kimberly Clum; USDA-Foreign Agricultural Services International Trade Specialist Katrina Reid and US National Taxonomists Assistant Director for APHIS National Identification Services Dr. Andrew Brower (behind Dr. Wallace).

USDA-APHIS also hosted site-visits for the meeting participants to their impressive facilities, such as the APHIS Plant Germplasm Inspection Station and Quarantine Program in Beltsville, Maryland and the APHIS National Identification Services for plant pests in both the USDA-Agricultural Research Service building in Beltsville, Maryland and at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington D.C.

APHIS Deputy Administrator Osama El-Lissy hosted the exit meeting of both delegations at USDA’s Whitten Building and affirmed his support for the resolution of the bilateral phytosanitary issues between the Philippines and the United States.

USDA Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue also had the chance to briefly visit with the meeting participants and highlighted the importance of trade between the United States and the Philippines.

“I congratulate the participants for covering a lot of ground in their bilateral meeting. These positive developments bode well for the expansion of Philippines-US agriculture cooperation and creation of opportunities for Filipino and American farmers and agri-businesses,” said Philippine Ambassador to the United States Jose Manuel G. Romualdez in a statement.

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TAGS: business, export agreement, Philippine young coconut export, Philippine young coconuts, U.S. – Philippines trade, U.S. agriculture market
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