Peru departments of Tacna and Moquegua declare state of emergency because of fruit fly plague

The southern departments of Tacna and Moquegua have declared a 150-day state of emergency because of a fruit fly plague that has spoiled peach, papaya, orange and mandarin crops, daily Peru21 reported Thursday.

According to the National Agrarian Sanitation Service, or Senasa, 6 control posts have been set up in the region, to contain the plague.

Any attempt to sell or export fruits that have not received an authentic sanitation certificate will lead to the immediate seizure and disposal of these food products. Citrus plantations in Peru are usually destined for export to markets in the United States and Europe.

Fruit flies can be a problem year round because they are attracted to ripened or fermenting fruits and vegetables. The reproductive potential of fruit flies is enormous, as the female fruit fly can lay approximately 500 eggs and the fly’s entire from egg to adult can be completed in about a week. Thought fruit flies are primarily nuisance pests, they also have the potential to contaminate food with bacteria and other disease-producing organisms.

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