62nd Meeting of the Panel on Phytosanitary Measures
The Panel met by teleconference on 2020-11-3/6 due to the COVID-19 situation. The main task of this Panel is to evaluate risks presented by specific pests and design phytosanitary measures to avoid their introduction and spread.
The recent work on the improvement of Global Database was presented and discussed, in particular:
- Creation of dynamic datasheets (in progress, 50 datasheets arising from the datasheet project have already been published in Global Database)
- Inclusion of references for host plants and changes in the host categories (from now on, the following categories will be used: Major host, Host, Wild/weed, Alternate, Experimental, Doubtful host, Non-host)
- Creation of EPPO Codes (in progress, 14 800 new Codes created since 2018)
Emerging pests and diseases were suggested for addition by the Panel: Spodoptera ornithogalli (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) following a PRA in the Netherlands, as well as a list of fungi based on recent detections in Switzerland. Following national PRAs, Xylosandrus crassiusculus was recommended for deletion from the Alert List (see below). The Panel also looked back at the assessment made in the Panel on Halyomorpha halys from 2009 to 2013 and concluded that keeping the pest listed for more than 3 years on the Alert List would have allowed countries to be better alerted.
Pest Risk Analysis
During the Panel, the following national/EU PRAs were discussed:
- Irish PRA on Lambdina fiscellaria (Lepidoptera: Geometridae): Conclusions are not directly applicable for the whole EPPO region and therefore cannot support an EPPO recommendation. An EPPO Alert Sheet is being prepared.
- Slovenian and British PRA on Xylosandrus crassiusculus (Coleoptera: Scolytinae): The Panel considered that the main pathways are covered by the recommendations made in the EPPO Study on bark and ambrosia beetles of non-coniferous wood and that natural spread cannot be prevented.
- Italian PRA on the Japanese cyst nematode Heterodera elachista: The Panel considered that there was not enough evidence to recommend it for regulation.
- EFSA Scientific Opinion on non-EU viruses and viroids of Vitis : most pests identified as fulfilling minimum criteria for listing as quarantine pests are already recommended for regulation by EPPO. However, this is not the case for grapevine red blotch virus (GRBV, EPPO Alert List) and temperate fruit decay-associated virus (TFDaV), which have hosts other than Vitis. PRA reports will be prepared for these two viruses.
- EFSA Scientific Opinion on Saperda tridentata (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae): The Panel did not recommend the pest for addition to the EPPO A1 List because there is no evidence that the cultivation of the main host species is important for the EPPO region.
Based on an assessment prepared by the EPPO Secretariat, the Panel agreed that Hymenoscyphus fraxineus does not fulfil the minimum requirements for being listed as a RNQP because of the importance of natural dispersal.
Because of the COVID-19 crisis EWGs for PRA will meet by videoconference in order to continue to provide recommendations to EPPO member countries on pests which have been considered as priority for PRAs.
Risk management measures
The Panel discussed conditions for establishing a pest free place of production (PFPP) and a pest free production site (PSPS) for Meloidogyne species. Regarding the acceptability of the PFA option for Meloidogyne species, the Panel considered that further discussion was needed before pest-specific recommendations for M. ethiopica, M. luci and M. graminicola can be finalized.
The EPPO Secretariat has started compiling an Excel file that contains the phytosanitary measures recommended by EPPO in the framework of EPPO PRAs, national PRAs whose measures were endorsed by EPPO as well as Standards from the series PM 8 Commodity-speciﬁc phytosanitary measures. This allowed the Panel to make revisions for clarification in PRA documents in relation to phytosanitary measures. These will be presented to the Working Party on Phytosanitary Regulations and Council. The Panel on Quarantine Pests for Forestry will review the consistency between PM8 Standards and PRAs. This work also led to a series of recommendations for those drafting future PRA reports or PRA records.
The Panel developed a reference document on Pre/Post-entry quarantine to be used by EWGs preparing PRAs. A reference document on the use of PFPP/PFPS/pest freedom of the crop options in EPPO PRAs will also be prepared.
The Panel reviewed a revised version of the guidance on buffer zones. This guidance was amended following an EWG which tested the expert knowledge elicitation (EKE) process for Heterobasidion irregulare and thousand cankers disease. The draft guidance was sent for country consultation after the Panel and is proposed for adoption as a Standard. A paragraph presenting the outputs of the EKE will be included in the PRAs for Heterobasidion irregulare and thousand cankers disease.
The Panel supported the proposal that an annex is developed in Standard PM 9/13 National regulatory control systems for PSTVd to include recommendations for countries that chose to regulate the pest as an RNQP.
Update on projects
The main objectives of the VALITEST project were presented and a discussion with risk managers on how choices of diagnostic tests are made was initiated. The information collected should help the VALITEST research team involved in work package 4 to construct a robust cost-benefit framework.
The next Panel meeting is planned on 2021-04-13/16.