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MEDFLY Appears Ominously in Southern Belize

Posted By: Marty

MEDFLY Appears Ominously in Southern Belize - 07/22/15 10:19 AM

The Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA) hereby informs the public, especially in Southern Belize, that the Mediterranean Fruit Fly (or Medfly) has been detected in the village of Hopkins in the Stann Creek District and in the Sapodilla Cayes in the Toledo District. As a result of these detections, eradication activities such as fruit stripping, ground spraying, and delimitation trapping are underway in these areas. These activities are important to ensure that the outbreak is contained and that the Medflies are eradicated quickly.

BAHA reminds the public that Belize is the only country in the region that is free of this pest and it is only when infested Medfly hosts, such as fruits and vegetables, are brought into Belize illegally that this pest is introduced. The Medfly is a very devastating pest and Belize could lose its export markets if the Medlfy becomes established and spreads into areas that are producing fruit for export. In addition, the Medfly also causes loss to small entrepreneurs who are unable to sell their fruits such as mango, craboo or guavas locally when areas are placed under quarantine restrictions. It also deprives the population in infested areas from consuming fresh fruits that is a valuable source of nutrition.

BAHA is asking all Belizeans and visitors to respect the law and ensure that fruits or vegetables that are brought into Belize are done so with a valid BAHA import permit.

Help us to maintain Belize Medfly free!!

B.A.H.A.

Posted By: Marty

Re: MEDFLY Appears Ominously in Southern Belize - 08/01/15 10:35 AM

Belize and US Sign Agreement on Fruitfly Eradication

A Belize delegation recently returned from Cancun, Mexico where they attended the second meeting of the multilateral fruit fly commission on Tuesday, July 28. Coming out of that meeting was a signed Fruit Fly Control Cooperative Agreement with the parties being the United States Department of Agricultrue (USDA), the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Agriculture and the Belize Agricultural Health Authority. The agreement seeks to govern cooperation when it comes to the management of the fruit fly pests in an interest to protect crops in Belize and in the United States.

The cooperation from both countries will come through the control and eradication of the fruit fly pests, the management of an exotic surveillance program and technical cooperation with respect to the management of fruit fly pests and related activities in Belize. The USDA has committed to provide just under four hundred thousand Belize dollars to this endeavor while the Belize Government will give counterpart funding of just under seven hundred thousand Belize dollars.

The contribution being given by the United States is to be used specifically for medfly eradication activities and for the acquisition of equipment, materials and supplies while the monies from Belize will be utilized for salaries, operational expenses for the medfly program. According to a release from the Belize Agricultural Health Authority, the signing comes at an opportune time as just recently, medflies were detected in the south of Belize.

Signing on behalf of the USDA was the Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Program Edward Avalos and for Belize was the Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Agriculture, Jose Alpuche. The Belize delegation comprised of CEO Alpuche; Managing Director of BAHA, Emir Cruz and the National Medfly Coordinator, Hernan Zetina.

LOVEFM
Posted By: Marty

Re: MEDFLY Appears Ominously in Southern Belize - 08/09/15 10:46 AM

Work continues towards keeping Belize Medfly free

Belize has signed on to the Fruit Fly Control Cooperative Agreement aimed at managing the pests in order to protect crops in Belize and the United States of America. The agreement was signed on Tuesday, July 28th during the Meeting of the Multilateral Fruit Fly Commission held in Cancun, Mexico. This marks the second time a delegation from Belize has participated in such an event. Concerns regarding the invasive pest grew when on Tuesday, July 21st, Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA) detected the Mediterranean fruit fly (or Medfly) in Southern Belize.

The Medfly is considered the most devastating agricultural pest in the world, and originated in the Mediterranean area. Capable of causing extensive damage to a wide range of fruit crops, the Medfly has spread invasively to many parts of North, Central and South America.

BAHA has identified possible outbreaks of Medfly in the Hopkins Village in the Stann Creek District and Sapodilla Cayes in the Toledo District. As a result, eradication activities such as fruit stripping, ground spraying, and delimitation trapping are underway in these areas. Belize is the only country in the region that is free of this pest and it is only when infested Medfly hosts, such as fruits and vegetables, are brought into Belize illegally that this pest is introduced. Adult Medfly lay eggs under the skins of fruit which serve as a distribution vessel.

“These activities are important to ensure that the outbreak is contained and that the Medflies are eradicated quickly. The Medfly is a very devastating pest and Belize could lose its export markets if the Medlfy becomes established and spreads into areas that are producing fruit for export. In addition, the Medfly also causes loss to small entrepreneurs who are unable to sell their fruits, such as mango, craboo or guavas locally when areas are placed under quarantine restrictions. It also deprives the population in infested areas from consuming fresh fruits that is a valuable source of nutrition,” said BAHA in a press release.

As part of the Fruit Fly Control Cooperative Agreement, BAHA will work along with United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, and the Ministry of Natural Resources and Agriculture to ensure outbreaks in the region do not occur. The cooperative efforts include the control and eradication of fruit fly pests; the management of an exotic fruit fly surveillance program, and technical cooperation with respect to the management of fruit fly pests and related activities in Belize.

In addition to the signing of the agreement, the USDA committed to providing Belize with $186,000US for the fiscal year 2016, while the Government of Belize (GOB) has committed $343,600US in counterpart funding. This contribution will be used specifically for Medfly eradication activities and for the procurement of equipment, materials and supplies, while the GOB contribution is for salaries and operational expenses for the Medfly programme.

All Belizeans and visitors are asked to respect the law and ensure that fruits or vegetables that are brought into Belize are done so with a valid BAHA import permit.

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