[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 219 (Wednesday, November 12, 2008)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 66807-66811]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E8-26814]


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Proposed Rules
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of 
the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these 
notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in 
the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules.

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Federal Register / Vol. 73, No. 219 / Wednesday, November 12, 2008 / 
Proposed Rules

[[Page 66807]]



DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

7 CFR Part 319

[Docket No. APHIS-2007-0153]
RIN 0579-AC88


Importation of Eggplant From Israel

AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION: Proposed rule.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: We are proposing to allow the importation of commercial 
shipments of fresh eggplant from Israel. As a condition of entry, the 
eggplant would be grown under a systems approach that would include 
requirements for pest exclusion at the production site, fruit fly 
trapping inside and outside the production site, and pest-excluding 
packinghouse procedures. The eggplant would also be required to be 
accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate issued by the Israeli 
national plant protection organization with an additional declaration 
confirming that the eggplant had been produced in accordance with the 
proposed requirements. This action would allow for the importation of 
commercial consignments of fresh eggplant from Israel into the United 
States while continuing to provide protection against the introduction 
of quarantine pests.

DATES: We will consider all comments that we receive on or before 
January 12, 2009.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by either of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://
www.regulations.gov/fdmspublic/component/
main?main=DocketDetail&d=APHIS-2007-0153 to submit or view comments and 
to view supporting and related materials available electronically.
     Postal Mail/Commercial Delivery: Please send two copies of 
your comment to Docket No. APHIS-2007-0153, Regulatory Analysis and 
Development, PPD, APHIS, Station 3A-03.8, 4700 River Road, Unit 118, 
Riverdale, MD 20737-1238. Please state that your comment refers to 
Docket No. APHIS-2007-0153.
    Reading Room: You may read any comments that we receive on this 
docket in our reading room. The reading room is located in room 1141 of 
the USDA South Building, 14th Street and Independence Avenue, SW., 
Washington, DC. Normal reading room hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., 
Monday through Friday, except holidays. To be sure someone is there to 
help you, please call (202) 690-2817 before coming.
    Other Information: Additional information about APHIS and its 
programs is available on the Internet at http://www.aphis.usda.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Donna L. West, Senior Import 
Specialist, Commodity Import Analysis and Operations, PPQ, APHIS, 4700 
River Road, Unit 133, Riverdale, MD 20737-1231; (301) 734-8758.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    The regulations in ``Subpart--Fruits and Vegetables'' (7 CFR 
319.56-1 through 319.56-47, referred to below as the regulations) 
prohibit or restrict the importation of fruits and vegetables into the 
United States from certain parts of the world to prevent the 
introduction and dissemination of plant pests that are new to or not 
widely distributed within the United States.
    The Israeli national plant protection organization (NPPO) has 
requested that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) 
amend the regulations to allow fresh eggplant (Solanum melongena L.) to 
be imported from Israel into the continental United States. As part of 
our evaluation of Israel's request, we prepared a pest risk assessment 
(PRA) and a risk management document (RMD). Copies of the PRA and the 
RMD may be obtained from the person listed under FOR FURTHER 
INFORMATION CONTACT or viewed on the Regulations.gov Web site (see 
ADDRESSES above for instructions for accessing Regulations.gov).
    The PRA, titled ``Evidence-based, Pathway-Initiated Risk Assessment 
of the Importation of Fresh Eggplant, Solanum melongena, from Israel 
into Continental United States'' (March 26, 2008), evaluates the risks 
associated with the importation of fresh eggplant into the continental 
United States (the lower 48 States and Alaska) from Israel.
    The PRA and supporting documents identified six pests of quarantine 
significance present in Israel that could be introduced into the United 
States through the importation of fresh eggplant. These include the 
Mediterranean fruit fly (Medfly, Ceratitis capitata); two moths, 
Helicoverpa armigera and Spodoptera littoralis; a mite, Eutetranychus 
orientalis; a mealybug, Nipaecoccus viridis; and a thrips, Scirtothrips 
dorsalis.
    APHIS has determined that measures beyond standard port of arrival 
inspection are required to mitigate the risks posed by these plant 
pests. Therefore, we are proposing to allow the importation of fresh 
eggplant from Israel into the continental United States only if the 
eggplant is produced under a systems approach. The systems approach 
would require that the eggplant be grown in approved production sites 
in pest-exclusionary structures, would require trapping inside and 
outside the pest-exclusionary structures for Medfly, and would require 
packinghouse procedures designed to exclude all six quarantine pests. 
Consignments of eggplant from Israel would also be required to be 
accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate with an additional 
declaration stating that the eggplant had been produced in accordance 
with the proposed requirements. Only commercial consignments of 
eggplant would be allowed to be imported from Israel.
    The mitigation measures in the proposed systems approach are 
discussed in greater detail below.

Approved Production Sites

    The eggplant would have to be grown in pest-exclusionary structures 
in approved production sites in the Arava Valley of Israel by growers 
registered with the Israeli NPPO. The Israeli NPPO and APHIS would have 
to jointly approve of the production sites. The pest-exclusionary 
structures would have to be equipped with double self-closing doors to 
prevent inadvertent introduction of pests into the pest-exclusionary 
structures. In addition, any vents or openings in the pest-exclusionary 
structures (other than the

[[Page 66808]]

double self-closing doors) would have to be covered with screening 1.6 
mm or smaller in order to prevent the entry of pests into the pest-
exclusionary structure. The 1.6 mm maximum screening size is adequate 
to exclude all pests of quarantine significance named earlier in this 
docket except for the thrips species. However, even the thrips species 
is at least partially discouraged by the physical barrier of the 1.6 mm 
mesh and the resultant reduced velocity of wind currents upon which 
they are borne. In addition, because thrips are external feeders, they 
would most likely be detected during inspection of the pest-
exclusionary structures for quarantine pests.
    We would require that the pest-exclusionary structures be inspected 
periodically by the Israeli NPPO or its approved designee to ensure 
that sanitary procedures are employed to exclude plant pests and 
diseases and to verify that the screening is intact.
    The pest-exclusionary structures would also have to be inspected 
monthly for the six quarantine pests listed earlier by the Israeli NPPO 
or its approved designee, beginning 2 months before harvest and 
continuing for the duration of the harvest. APHIS would have to be 
granted access in order to monitor or inspect the pest-exclusionary 
structures during this period as well. If, during these inspections, 
quarantine pests were found inside the pest-exclusionary structure, the 
Israeli NPPO would have to immediately prohibit that pest-exclusionary 
structure from exporting eggplants to the continental United States and 
notify APHIS of the action. The prohibition would remain in effect 
until the Israeli NPPO and APHIS agree that the risk has been 
mitigated.

Trapping for Medfly

    Trapping for Medfly would be required both inside and outside the 
pest-exclusionary structures. Trapping would have to begin 2 months 
before harvest and continue for the duration of the harvest.
    APHIS-approved traps, with an approved protein bait, would have to 
be placed inside the pest-exclusionary structures at a density of four 
traps per hectare, with a minimum of at least two traps per pest-
exclusionary structure. The traps would have to be serviced at least 
once every 7 days. If a single Medfly was found in a trap inside a 
pest-exclusionary structure, the Israeli NPPO would have to immediately 
prohibit that pest-exclusionary structure from exporting eggplant to 
the United States and notify APHIS of the action. The prohibition would 
remain in effect until the Israeli NPPO and APHIS agree that the risk 
has been mitigated. Measures we might use to mitigate the risk include 
delimiting the source of the infestation, increasing trap density, 
applying pesticide sprays, or other measures acceptable to APHIS to 
prevent further occurrences.
    In order to reduce the pest pressure of Medfly outside the pest-
exclusionary structures, no shade trees would be permitted within 10 
meters of the entry door of the pest-exclusionary structures, and no 
fruit fly host plants would be permitted within 50 meters of the entry 
door of the pest-exclusionary structures. While trapping is being 
conducted, no fruit fly host material (such as fruit) would be allowed 
to be brought into the pest-exclusionary structures or discarded within 
50 meters of the entry door of the pest-exclusionary structures. A 
treatment jointly approved by the Israeli NPPO and APHIS would have to 
be applied in the areas of the Arava Valley where fruit fly host 
material occurs in backyards, in order to reduce the Medfly population. 
This treatment would have to be applied for the duration of the 
eggplant harvest. Trapping for Medfly would have to be conducted by the 
Israeli NPPO or its approved designee throughout the year in the 
agricultural region along the Arava Highway 90 and in the residential 
area of Paran. These trapping records would have to be kept and made 
available to APHIS for review upon request.

Packinghouse Procedures

    The eggplant would have to be packed within 24 hours of harvest in 
a pest-exclusionary packinghouse. While packing the eggplant for export 
to the continental United States, the packinghouse would only be 
allowed to accept eggplant from approved pest-exclusionary structures. 
As with the pest-exclusionary structures, no shade trees would be 
permitted within 10 meters of the entry door of the packinghouse, and 
no fruit fly host plants would be permitted within 50 meters of the 
entry door of the packinghouse. The eggplant would have to be 
safeguarded by a pest-proof screen or plastic tarpaulin while in 
transit to the packinghouse and while awaiting packing. Packinghouse 
procedures would have to include culling of any visibly damaged, 
overripe, or infested eggplant.
    The eggplant would have to be packed for shipment to the 
continental United States in either individual insect-proof cartons or 
boxes labeled with the specific place of origin or non-insect-proof 
cartons or boxes that are covered by insect-proof mesh or plastic 
tarpaulins. Covered non-insect-proof cartons or boxes would have to be 
placed in shipping containers that have identification labels 
indicating the specific place of origin. Labeling the cartons or boxes 
and/or containers with the place of origin would facilitate traceback 
if necessary and help ensure that only shipments from approved pest-
exclusionary structures are shipped to the continental United States. 
These safeguards would have to remain intact until the arrival of the 
eggplant in the continental United States or the consignment would not 
be allowed to enter the continental United States. These safeguards 
would prevent the eggplant from being infested with plant pests during 
departure from the approved pest-exclusionary structures until its 
arrival in the continental United States.

Commercial Consignments

    Only commercial consignments of eggplant from Israel would be 
allowed to be imported into the United States. Produce grown 
commercially is less likely to be infested with plant pests than 
noncommercial consignments. Noncommercial consignments are more prone 
to infestations because the commodity is often ripe to overripe, could 
be of a variety with unknown susceptibility to pests, and is often 
grown with little or no pest control. Commercial consignments, as 
defined in Sec.  319.56-2, are consignments that an inspector 
identifies as having been imported for sale and distribution. Such 
identification is based on a variety of indicators, including, but not 
limited to: Quantity of produce, type of packaging, identification of 
grower or packinghouse on the packaging, and documents consigning the 
fruits or vegetables to a wholesaler or retailer.

Phytosanitary Certificate

    To certify that the eggplant has been produced in accordance with 
the mitigations described in this document, we would require that each 
consignment of eggplant be accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate 
of inspection issued by the Israeli NPPO bearing an additional 
declaration that reads ``The eggplant in this consignment has been 
grown in an approved production site and inspected and found free of 
the pests listed in 7 CFR 319.56-48.'' These proposed provisions 
governing the importation of eggplant from Israel would be added to the 
regulations as a new Sec.  319.56-48.

[[Page 66809]]

Executive Order 12866 and Regulatory Flexibility Act

    This proposed rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12866. 
The rule has been determined to be not significant for the purposes of 
Executive Order 12866 and, therefore, has not been reviewed by the 
Office of Management and Budget.
    We are proposing to allow the importation of commercial shipments 
of fresh eggplant from Israel. As a condition of entry, the eggplant 
would have to be grown under a systems approach that would include 
requirements for pest exclusion at the production site, fruit fly 
trapping inside and outside the production site, and pest-excluding 
packinghouse procedures. The eggplant would also be required to be 
accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate issued by the Israeli NPPO 
with an additional declaration confirming that the eggplant had been 
produced in accordance with the proposed requirements. This action 
would allow for the importation of commercial consignments of fresh 
aeggplant from Israel into the United States while continuing to 
provide protection against the introduction of quarantine pests.
    Eggplant, which is native to India and Pakistan, is a warm-season 
crop that is sensitive to cool temperatures. World production of 
eggplant is highly concentrated, with 83 percent of output by the top 
two producers, China (55 percent) and India (28 percent), and with the 
United States a distant 20th in production.
    According to the 2002 Census of Agriculture, there were 50,000 
farms in 47 States that may produce, among other vegetables, some 
eggplant, but only about 4 percent of the 50,000 farms reported 
harvesting eggplant. In all, about 7,000 acres are devoted to eggplant 
production in the United States, with 72 percent of eggplant production 
taking place in 11 counties in 4 States: California, Florida, Georgia, 
and New Jersey (table 1). In addition, 63 percent of the number of 
acres planted in eggplant in the United States are in these four 
States. Production at a much lower level takes place in other States 
including Hawaii, Michigan, and New York.

                     Table 1--2006 State-Level Production of Eggplants in the United States
 
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        States/counties            Eggplant production (metric tons)      Number of acres planted with eggplants
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
California (Fresno and          17,690.11..............................  1,364.
 Riverside).
Florida (Palm Beach,            15,875.74..............................  1,174.
 Hillsborough, Dade).
Georgia (Colquitt, Echols,      14,870.75..............................  1,100.
 Lowndes).
New Jersey (Gloucester,         11,748.05..............................  800.
 Cumberland, Atlantic).
Sum of 4 States...............  60,184.65 (72% of production)..........  4,438 (63% of planted area).
United States.................  83,914.61..............................  7,000.
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Source: United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Economic Research Service (ERS), Vegetables and Melons
  Situation and Outlook Yearbook, December 2006; U.S. Census of Agriculture, 2002.

    Despite a per-capita consumption rate of less than 1 pound, the 
United States is the leading importer of eggplant in the world, 
accounting for 20 percent of world eggplant import volume.\1\ The next 
largest eggplant importers are France with 15 percent, Syria with 12 
percent, Germany with 11 percent, and Canada with 9 percent of world 
eggplant import volume. These 5 countries account for 67 percent of 
world eggplant imports. The remaining 33 percent of world eggplant 
imports is divided among the rest of the world. Between 2004 and 2006, 
the United States imported on average $45 million worth of eggplant 
(table 2).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ Vegetables and Melons Outlook/VGS-318/December 14, 2006, 
Economic Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture (pages 23-
27).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Most U.S. eggplant imports enter during the cooler months of the 
year. Florida is the only domestic shipper during the winter.\2\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ On average, during 2004-06, the winter season (January-
March) accounted for 55 percent of U.S. eggplant imports; the spring 
season (April-June) accounted for 20 percent; the summer season 
(July-September) accounted for 5 percent; and, the fall season 
(October-December) accounted for 31 percent.

            Table 2--U.S. Trade of Fresh Eggplants, 2004-2006
 
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                       U.S.         U.S.
                                     imports      exports    Net imports
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                        Value in thousand dollars
------------------------------------------------------------------------
2004.............................      $49,028       $8,148      $40,880
2005.............................       45,981        8,735       37,246
2006.............................       39,986        8,943       31,043
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                        Quantities in metric tons
------------------------------------------------------------------------
2004.............................     49,768.4      9,669.1     40,099.3
2005.............................     54,096.8      9,660.5     44,436.3
2006.............................     49,065.0      9,626.2    39,438.8
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Source: U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Census, as reported by
  Global Trade Information Services. Note: Based on the Harmonized
  Schedules 070930.


[[Page 66810]]

Impact on Small Entities

    U.S. entities that could be affected by the proposed rule are 
domestic producers of fresh eggplant and wholesalers that import fresh 
eggplant. Businesses producing fresh eggplant are classified in the 
North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) within the 
category of other vegetable (except potato) and melon farming (NAICS 
111219). The Small Business Administration's (SBA) small-entity 
standard for this category is $750,000 or less in annual receipts. 
While available data do not provide the number of U.S. eggplant-
producing entities or information on the size distribution of U.S. 
eggplant-producing entities, it is reasonable to assume that the 
majority of the operations are small by SBA standards, based on the 
fact that the average vegetable farm is small.
    Israel is a small exporter of eggplant. For example, in 2006 
Israel's exports of commercial shipments of fresh eggplant were valued 
at only $20,000. This value is only 0.05 percent of the value of U.S. 
eggplant imports in 2006 (nearly $40 million). In other words, even if 
all of Israel's 2006 worldwide eggplant exports are diverted entirely 
to the United States, they would represent a negligible share of total 
U.S. imports and an even smaller share of the U.S. eggplant supply.
    Under these circumstances, the Administrator of the Animal and 
Plant Health Inspection Service has determined that this action would 
not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities.

Executive Order 12988

    This proposed rule would allow eggplant to be imported into the 
continental United States from Israel. If this proposed rule is 
adopted, State and local laws and regulations regarding eggplant 
imported under this rule would be preempted while the fruit is in 
foreign commerce. Fresh fruits are generally imported for immediate 
distribution and sale to the consuming public and would remain in 
foreign commerce until sold to the ultimate consumer. The question of 
when foreign commerce ceases in other cases must be addressed on a 
case-by-case basis. If this proposed rule is adopted, no retroactive 
effect will be given to this rule, and this rule will not require 
administrative proceedings before parties may file suit in court.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    In accordance with section 3507(d) of the Paperwork Reduction Act 
of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), the information collection or 
recordkeeping requirements included in this proposed rule have been 
submitted for approval to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). 
Please send written comments to the Office of Information and 
Regulatory Affairs, OMB, Attention: Desk Officer for APHIS, Washington, 
DC 20503. Please state that your comments refer to Docket No. APHIS-
2007-0153. Please send a copy of your comments to: (1) Docket No. 
APHIS-2007-0153, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, 
Station 3A-03.8, 4700 River Road Unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737-1238, 
and (2) Clearance Officer, OCIO, USDA, room 404-W, 14th Street and 
Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20250. A comment to OMB is 
best assured of having its full effect if OMB receives it within 30 
days of publication of this proposed rule.
    APHIS is proposing to allow the importation of commercial 
consignments of fresh eggplant from Israel. As a condition of entry, 
the eggplant would be grown under a systems approach that would include 
requirements for pest exclusion at the production site, fruit fly 
trapping inside and outside the production site, and pest-excluding 
packinghouse procedures. The eggplant would also be required to be 
accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate issued by the Israeli 
national plant protection organization with an additional declaration 
confirming that the eggplant had been produced in accordance with the 
proposed requirements. This action would allow for the importation of 
commercial consignments of fresh eggplant from Israel into the United 
States while continuing to provide protection against the introduction 
of quarantine pests.
    Implementing this information collection will allow respondents to 
complete various documents such as trapping records, labeling of boxes, 
inspection, and phytosanitary certificates.
    We are soliciting comments from the public (as well as affected 
agencies) concerning our proposed information collection and 
recordkeeping requirements. These comments will help us:
    (1) Evaluate whether the proposed information collection is 
necessary for the proper performance of our agency's functions, 
including whether the information will have practical utility;
    (2) Evaluate the accuracy of our estimate of the burden of the 
proposed information collection, including the validity of the 
methodology and assumptions used;
    (3) Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to 
be collected; and
    (4) Minimize the burden of the information collection on those who 
are to respond (such as through the use of appropriate automated, 
electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or 
other forms of information technology; e.g., permitting electronic 
submission of responses).
    Estimate of burden: Public reporting burden for this collection of 
information is estimated to average 0.0047 hours per response.
    Respondents: Importers of eggplants, foreign officials (non-
government).
    Estimated annual number of respondents: 18,005.
    Estimated annual number of responses per respondent: 1.0031.
    Estimated annual number of responses: 18,061.
    Estimated total annual burden on respondents: 85 hours. (Due to 
averaging, the total annual burden hours may not equal the product of 
the annual number of responses multiplied by the reporting burden per 
response.)
    Copies of this information collection can be obtained from Mrs. 
Celeste Sickles, APHIS's Information Collection Coordinator, at (301) 
851-2908.

E-Government Act Compliance

    The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is committed to 
compliance with the E-Government Act to promote the use of the Internet 
and other information technologies, to provide increased opportunities 
for citizen access to Government information and services, and for 
other purposes. For information pertinent to E-Government Act 
compliance related to this proposed rule, please contact Mrs. Celeste 
Sickles, APHIS's Information Collection Coordinator, at (301) 851-2908.

List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 319

    Coffee, Cotton, Fruits, Imports, Logs, Nursery stock, Plant 
diseases and pests, Quarantine, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements, Rice, Vegetables.

    Accordingly, we propose to amend 7 CFR part 319 as follows:

PART 319--FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES

    1. The authority citation for part 319 continues to read as 
follows:


    Authority: 7 U.S.C. 450, 7701-7772, and 7781-7786; 21 U.S.C. 136 
and 136a; 7 CFR 2.22, 2.80, and 371.3.

    2. A new Sec.  319.56-48 is added to read as follows:

[[Page 66811]]

Sec.  319.56-48  Eggplant from Israel.

    Eggplant (Solanum melongena L.) may be imported into the 
continental United States from Israel only under the conditions 
described in this section. These conditions are designed to prevent the 
introduction of the following quarantine pests: Ceratitis capitata, 
Eutetranychus orientalis, Helicoverpa armigera, Nipaecoccus viridis, 
Scirtothrips dorsalis, and Spodoptera littoralis.
    (a) Approved pest-exclusionary structures. The eggplant must be 
grown in pest-exclusionary structures in approved production sites in 
the Arava Valley of Israel by growers registered with the Israeli 
national plant protection organization (NPPO). Initial approval of the 
production sites must be completed jointly by the Israeli NPPO and 
APHIS.
    (1) The pest-exclusionary structures must be equipped with double 
self-closing doors.
    (2) Any vents or openings in the pest-exclusionary structures 
(other than the double self-closing doors) must be covered with 1.6 mm 
or smaller screening in order to prevent the entry of pests into the 
pest-exclusionary structure.
    (3) The pest-exclusionary structures must be inspected periodically 
by the Israeli NPPO or its approved designee to ensure that sanitary 
procedures are employed to exclude plant pests and diseases and to 
verify that the screening is intact.
    (4) The pest-exclusionary structures also must be inspected monthly 
for the quarantine pests listed in the introductory text of this 
section by the Israeli NPPO or its approved designee, beginning 2 
months before harvest and continuing for the duration of the harvest. 
APHIS must be granted access to inspect or monitor the pest-
exclusionary structures during this period as well. If, during these 
inspections, any quarantine pests listed in the introductory text of 
this section are found inside a pest-exclusionary structure, the 
Israeli NPPO will immediately prohibit that pest-exclusionary structure 
from exporting eggplant to the continental United States and notify 
APHIS of the action. The prohibition will remain in effect until the 
Israeli NPPO and APHIS agree that the risk has been mitigated.
    (b) Trapping for Medfly. Trapping for Mediterranean fruit fly 
(Medfly, Ceratitis capitata) is required both inside and outside the 
pest-exclusionary structures. Trapping must begin 2 months before 
harvest and continue for the duration of the harvest.
    (1) Inside the pest-exclusionary structures. APHIS-approved fruit 
fly traps with an approved protein bait must be placed inside the pest-
exclusionary structures at a density of four traps per hectare, with a 
minimum of at least two traps per pest-exclusionary structure. The 
traps must be serviced at least once every 7 days. If a single Medfly 
is found in a trap inside a pest-exclusionary structure, the Israeli 
NPPO will immediately prohibit that pest-exclusionary structure from 
exporting eggplant to the continental United States and notify APHIS of 
the action. The prohibition will remain in effect until the Israeli 
NPPO and APHIS agree that the risk has been mitigated.
    (2) Outside the pest-exclusionary structures. (i) No shade trees 
are permitted within 10 meters of the entry door of the pest-
exclusionary structures, and no fruit fly host plants are permitted 
within 50 meters of the entry door of the pest-exclusionary structures. 
While trapping is being conducted, no fruit fly host material (such as 
fruit) may be brought into the pest-exclusionary structures or be 
discarded within 50 meters of the entry door of the pest-exclusionary 
structures.
    (ii) A treatment jointly approved by the Israeli NPPO and APHIS 
must be applied for the duration of the eggplant harvest in the areas 
of the Arava Valley where fruit fly host material occurs in backyards.
    (iii) Trapping for Medfly must be conducted by the Israeli NPPO or 
its approved designee throughout the year in the agricultural region 
along the Arava Highway 90 and in the residential area of Paran.
    (iv) Trapping records must be kept and made available for APHIS 
review upon request.
    (c) Packinghouse procedures. The eggplant must be packed within 24 
hours of harvest in a pest-exclusionary packinghouse. While packing the 
eggplant for export to the continental United States, the packinghouse 
may only accept eggplant from approved pest-exclusionary structures. No 
shade trees are permitted within 10 meters of the entry door of the 
packinghouse, and no fruit fly host plants are permitted within 50 
meters of the entry door of the packinghouse. The eggplant must be 
safeguarded by a pest-proof screen or plastic tarpaulin while in 
transit to the packinghouse and while awaiting packing. Packinghouse 
procedures must include culling of any visibly damaged, overripe, or 
infested eggplant. The eggplant must be packed in either individual 
insect-proof cartons or boxes labeled with the specific place of origin 
or non-insect-proof cartons or boxes that are covered by insect-proof 
mesh or plastic tarpaulins. Covered non-insect-proof cartons or boxes 
must be placed in shipping containers that have identification labels 
indicating the specific place of origin. These safeguards must remain 
intact until the arrival of the eggplant in the continental United 
States or the consignment will not be allowed to enter the continental 
United States.
    (d) Commercial consignments. Eggplant from Israel may be imported 
in commercial consignments only.
    (e) Phytosanitary certificate. Each consignment of eggplant must be 
accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate of inspection issued by the 
Israeli NPPO with an additional declaration reading as follows: ``The 
eggplant in this consignment has been grown in an approved production 
site and inspected and found free of the pests listed in 7 CFR 
319.56*48.''

    Done in Washington, DC, this 5th day of November 2008.
Kevin Shea,
Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
[FR Doc. E8-26814 Filed 11-10-08; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-34-P