SA citrus concerns from EU
SOUTH Africa’s citrus industry will seek to expand amid an EU threat to ban citrus imports from the country, according to Agriculture Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson .
“It is difficult to comply with the ( EU) requirements, but this will not deter us from growing the industry,” she told reporters in Joburg yesterday.
The minister said the EU was concerned about citrus black spot – fungus – on fruit the country exported to Europe.
Other issues included shipping and storing temperature requirements.
“This concern and other issues raised by the EU are being addressed with them. Their door remains open and they have shown us the goodwill to work on this.”
Pieter Nortje, of the Citrus Growers Association of SA, said: “The EU is a big market for us and losing it would threaten the industry.”
Forty percent of South Africa’s citrus fruit exports went to the EU. – Sapa