The Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation of Peru (MINAGRI) declared a phytosanitary alert to prevent the entry of the fungus Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. Cuban Race 4 Tropical (FocR4T), one of the most devastating pests that could affect more than 170,000 cultivated hectares of bananas in the country.
The Resolution 0175-2019 states that SENASA (National Agrarian Health Service) will maintain and strengthen phytosanitary surveillance and quarantine action, which will allow the early detection of the fungus to protect banana crops nationwide.
The entry and establishment of this pest in Peru would cause economic impacts in the production of 30,000 hectares of bananas, which mostly have organic certification for agro-export. There is also social impacts, as the estimated banana production of 140,000 hectares constitutes the basis of the food security of the Amazonian population.
The losses caused by this plague in the countries where it entered and established, progressively reached 100% of banana production. It is estimated that more than 143,648 small producers in 17 regions of the country would be seriously affected.
Peru is free of FocR4T and maintaining this state is the task of the actors in the production chain of this crop. It is recommended not to enter the country with materials such as plants and vegetative parts of bananas or handicrafts made using these materials without the authorization of SENASA, and not to visit banana plantations in countries affected by the plague.
Image source: “Peru Flag” by Dragon781O is marked with CC BY-SA 2.0.