[REPONSE] Question écrite à la Commission E-001500-18 « Contrôle phytosanitaire d’Epitrix »

Niveau juridique : Union européenne

Question écrite à la commission par Izaskun Bilbao Barandica (ALDE) au sujet des contrôles sanitaires sur les pommes de terre.

Les producteurs espagnols vont valoir l’inadéquation des règles sanitaires établies pour lutter contre une éventuelle infestation d’Epitrix et font valoir qu’au lieu d’une zone d’isolation, une inspection sur place serait beaucoup plus efficace.

Texte de la question :

« Potato producers in designated regions such as A Limia, in the Autonomous Community of Galicia, complain that the phytosanitary rules established to combat a possible Epitrix infestation in potatoes does not allow the scale of the risk to be properly assessed. In particular, the rules establish an isolation zone of 500 m around the point at which a confirmed infestation is detected. However, if individual zones are spread over a wide area, the total area of isolation can end up being disproportionately extensive. The entire crop from these areas must then be brushed, adversely affecting quality and presentation and increasing production costs, and must be sold accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate; the crop concerned may not be exported. For these reasons, the producers consider that on-site potato inspections would be a much more effective means of combating this infection without harming the interests of producers.

1. Is the Commission aware of this problem?

2. Are there any plans to review procedures for the prevention of Epitrix infections in potatoes?

3. Does the Commission consider that inspections during harvesting could usefully replace the current system of identifying at-risk areas? »

Réponse par Mr Andriukaitis, au nom de la Commission

« 1. The Commission is aware of the outbreaks caused by Epitrix on potatoes in the autonomous community of Galicia and of the consequences for potato producers. EU emergency measures to control these outbreaks(1), supplemented by national measures taken by the competent authorities, are in place. It is now important that those measures are meticulously implemented to avoid further spreading of the pest.

2. The Commission is open to consider any new scientific or technical developments and, if appropriate, to review the EU emergency measures. Member States have been invited to provide any new information, which will be carefully assessed.

3. The organisation of inspections in the field is part of the action plan for the implementation of the measures and falls under the national competence. The responsible competent authorities have to work out an efficient planning to allow the early identification, control and eradication of this regulated pest. The early detection of infested fields is needed to allow the control of the pest and avoid further spreading.

(1) Commission Implementing Decision 2012/270/EU of 16 May 2012 as regards emergency measures to prevent the introduction into and the spread within the Union of Epitrix cucumeris (Harris), Epitrix similaris (Gentner), Epitrix subcrinita (Lec.) and Epitrix tuberis (Gentner), OJ L 132, 23.5.2012, p. 18-21, last amended by Commission Implementing Decision (EU) 2018/5 of 3 January 2018, OJ L 2, 5.1.2018, p. 11‐13. »

Texte de la question disponible ici