Wednesday , July 24 2024
State begins mass fruit removal to stop invasive fruit fly

State begins mass fruit removal to stop invasive fruit fly

The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) is preparing to begin large-scale fruit removal in the Redlands area of San Bernardino County to combat a fruit fly that has invaded the region.

The Oriental fruit fly, a non-native, invasive species, targets citrus fruit to lay its eggs inside, posing a threat to both residential and commercial citrus as well as a total of more than 230 crops, including nuts, vegetables, and berries.

The state believes removal of the citrus, as well as a number of other fruits, will disrupt the fly’s life cycle. If left unchecked, the Oriental fruit fly could become permanently established and cause billions of dollars worth of losses annually, which would significantly impact California’s food supply.

Residents in the removal area are strongly urged to cooperate with agricultural officials working on the project, as fruit removal is mandatory. Residents in areas of concern will receive a notice 48 hours prior to fruit removal, with work crews arriving after the stated time interval has passed.

Residents in the removal area are asked not to remove fruit from trees themselves and they may not move produce from their property. If fruit falls from trees and must be disposed of, residents are urged to double-bag it and place it in a trash bin rather than green waste bins or other organic refuse designations. This approach significantly reduces the risk of spread of Oriental fruit flies, larvae, and maggots.

The removal is expected to continue through late February.

More information about the Oriental fruit fly is available at CAFruitFly.com.

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