The restriction imposed by Mexico on the entry of fresh shrimp from Guatemala is causing uncertainty among Honduran shrimp cultivators.
In the view of producers and exporters of shrimp in Honduras, the gaps that exist in the procedures of the National Agricultural Health Service (SENASA), which has been taken over because of irregularities in its administration, hinder compliance with the requirements under which Mexico will allow entry of fresh shrimp.
The slowness with which health authorities issue phytosanitary permits is causing delays in the process of importing products which are in short supply locally, such as potatoes.
Importers argue that the Institute of Animal and Plant Health Protection (IPSA by its initials in Spanish) takes up to 3 months to grant phytosanitary certification which authorizes purchases.In the case of potatoes, authorization to import the product was in effect from July 5 to August 5.
Health authorities in Costa Rica have confirmed that since May they have prevented the entry of products from two dairy plants belonging to the Mexican company Lala in Nicaragua.
After information was circulated about the alleged closure of the Nicaraguan market to dairy products from three companies in Costa Rica, the health authorities of this country have acknowledged that since May 2016 they have restricted the entry of Lala's dairy products , having detected".. . several examples of "non - compliance" in the production system of the two plants inspected. "
The World Organization for Animal Health has granted country certification with negligible risk of the disease bovine spongiform encephalopathy.
From a statement issued by the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock of Costa Rica (MAG):
Costa Rica is known worldwide as a country with negligible risk of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), known as "mad cow" disease. This was established by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), the competent authority in animal health, in its 84th Assembly held in May in France, and attended by about 850 participants, representing 180 member countries, many scientific personalities and around forty international, intergovernmental, regional and national organizations.
In a statement issued by the Ministry, the chief Luis Felipe Arauz said 'I, as Minister, asked her to resign.It is absolutely false that the deputy minister signed any certificates that were not inspected.She asked for, and I supported, a return to the system of inspections in packing plants and in the field, in this way strengthening controls in order to improve the issue of INTs in pineapples'."
Nacion.com reports that "...From yesterday afternoon, explained Arauz, controls on pineapple exports at the port were suspended and measures were streamlined in order to reinforce SFE staff carrying out inspections in the field with six officials from the MAG as well as a plan to train inspectors from companies in coordination with the United States Department of Agriculture. "
In relation to the conflict over the ban on imports of avocados from Mexico, the minister was clear that the situation remains the same."...After repeating several times that the dispute was only on the issue of changes in pineapple controls, minister Arauz said that support is being maintained for other controversial measures taken by the now former director of the SFE, such as the issue of Hass avocados."
Pineapple exporters claim to have lost $2.3 million since the authorities started making additional inspections of containers at ports of departure.
Arguing that in April an increased presence of insects was detected in containers of pineapples exported to the United States, the State Phytosanitary Service (SFE) has tightened control measures, which are no longer limited to inspections on farms and packing plants, but also include an extra inspection at ports of departure.
The poultry industry in Nicaragua plans to initiate efforts to obtain certification so that its plants can start exporting chicken meat to the United States.
Since the certification process can take up to three years, the aim of the poultry industry is to start early in order to be ready to start exporting to the US market before the end of the period of tariff reduction set by the DR-CAFTA.
Arguing the imposition of non-tariff barriers, Centrolac has filed with the Central American Court of Justice a claim against Honduras because it prevented Nicaraguan milk from entering the country.
Although the Honduran government insists that restricting the entry of milk from Nicaragua is strictly in adherence to sanitary measures, Nicaraguan producers and exporters maintain their position and are demanding that the government take retaliatory measures against Honduras. Therefore, the company Centrolac presented on May 10 a lawsuit with the Central American Court of Justice, denouncing the closure of borders and accusing the country "... of contravening Community law".
The ban on Mexican avocado has led to an increase in imports from Chile, raising its wholesale price by more than 30%, and will cause shortages when locally produced supplies have been exhausted.
Protectionism for the Costa Rican production of avocados introduced by the Solis administration, arguing phytosanitary measures, achieved results that benefited local producers, such as increasing the price of the product and a decline in import volumes (13,061 tons in 2013 vs . 11,187 in 2015). But what is good for the local producer, is bad for consumers who are forced to pay more for the fruit, as well as seeing their right to choose what to consume violated, and eventually being prevented from simply consuming anything at all because there is no supply.
The Food Sector Authority has announced new tariffs for technical, sanitary and phytosanitary services which will take effect on 1 April.
From a statement issued by the Panamanian Food Safety Authority:
City of Panama. After several meetings with different associations and the promulgation in the Official Newspaper La Gaceta regarding changes to fees for technical, sanitary and phytosanitary services, the Panamanian Authority for Food Safety (AUPSA), announces that these will become effective from 1 ° of April.