Help protect B.C. apple industry from destructive pests

Avoid transport of apples from one region to another to avoid importation of pests

 

 

The Ministry of Agriculture is asking for the public’s co- operation to help protect the B.C. apple industry from apple pests  and minimize the use of pesticides.

Apple maggot (Rhagoletis pomonella), a serious apple pest, is  established in the Fraser Valley, Greater Vancouver and Vancouver  Island. The Okanagan and Similkameen Valleys of B.C. remain the only commercial apple-producing regions in North America free of this  serious pest. The co-operation of all citizens will help prevent the  spread of Apple Maggot from the Lower Mainland to B.C.’s commercial  fruit growing areas.

What can you do to help prevent the spread of apple maggot?

* Do not take any fruit (apples, crabapples, hawthorn, pears, plums)  or any fruit bins or other containers used to hold apples, out of the  Lower Mainland.

* Do not take plants with garden soil that were grown near fruit  trees (apples, crabapples, hawthorn, pears, plums) out of the Lower  Mainland.

* If you receive fruit from the Lower Mainland that appears to be  infested, contact the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) or a  Ministry of Agriculture office.

* Do not compost any apples that appear to be infested with apple  maggot. Place the fruit in a sealed plastic bag and bury it at least  30 cm deep, or take it to the local landfill for burial.

Please contact the CFIA at 604 557-4500 if you are planning to move any host fruit or host trees with soil, or host nursery stock, out of  the Lower Mainland.

Another pest, the apple clearwing moth, (Synanthedon myopaeformis),  has been found in Coastal B.C., Cawston, Keremeos, Oliver, North Osoyoos, Kelowna and Belgo. The larvae burrow inside the bark and may  not be visible. To prevent this pest from spreading in the Okanagan  and Creston Valleys, do not move fruit trees, soil and rootstocks  from infested areas.

 

 

 

Boundary-Similkameen MLA John Slater –

“We all need to do our part in preventing the spread of these pests.

The apple industry is very important to the Okanagan and B.C.’s  economy; to support our jobs, our food supply, and our farming  communities.”

Quick Facts:

* Apples are the most valuable edible tree fruit crop in BC. About 58

per cent of all B.C. orchard land is planted in apples.

* About 91 per cent of B.C. apples are produced in the Thompson- Okanagan Region, 48 per cent of which is in the Okanagan-Similkameen valleys.

* B.C. produces about 24 per cent of the apples grown in Canada. The  value of B.C. apples is about 45 per cent of all B.C. tree fruit production.

* More than three-quarters of the B.C. apple crop is sold fresh. The rest of the crop is processed.

 

* Apple juice is the most popular form of processed apples.