Jamaica Exporters Association (JEA), MINAG, RADA
Charles Reid, Jamaica Exporters Association-JEA; Carol Thomas, Plant Quarantine Division,MINAG;Phillip Chung, RADA
Plant quarantine officers at the two major local ports Sangsters International Airport, Montego Bay and Norman Manley International Airport, Kingston were monitoring pest interception levels and data are being recorded. A traceability system was being developed and implemented by the Jamaica Exporters Association (JEA) in association with the Ministry of Agriculture (MINAG) to enable the origin (farmer location) of each box of hot peppers being shipped to be readily identified. This system was being developed as a web-based database to allow for quick trace-back and documentation of farmer histories. Various agricultural agencies such as Plant Quarantine, will be linked to the system to allow for quick response to emergent problems of the pest, and location of hot spots, as well as identification of pest free areas.
Gall midge continued to be found in shipments during inspections by local plant quarantine officials. Consequently, relevant authorities decided to proceed with caution with respect to implementation of conditional fumigation of hot peppers. More data will be collected both at the field and ports to better understand seasonal population changes of the pest before implementing the system.