The Plant Quarantine Act, originally enacted in 1912 in USA gave the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) authority to regulate the importation and interstate movement of nursery stock and other plants that may carry pests and diseases that are harmful to agriculture. This Act has been superseded by the consolidated APHIS statute, the Plant Protection Act of 2000 (7 U.S.C. 7701 et seq.). This authority is particularly important to the agency's ability to prevent or limit the spread of harmful invasive species within or to a state or region of the United States. However, each country will have its own rules and regulation on PQ.
The purpose and intent is to prevent the introduction of any insect, fungus or other pest, which is or may be destructive to crops. Further, the significance of Plant Quarantine has increased in view of Globalization and liberalization in International trade of plants and plant material in the wake of Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Agreement under WTO. The phytosanitary certification of agricultural commodities being exported is also undertaken as per International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC), 1951.
In line with the New Policy on Seed Development, 1988 and the provisions of PQ Order, 2003, the specified planting material for propagation (viz., cuttings, saplings, bud woods, etc.) require growing under Post Entry Quarantine (PEQ) for a specified period. The import permit for such planting material is granted based on a certificate from Designated.
The export inspections involves sampling and detailed laboratory tests in case of seeds and planting material for propagation whereas visual examination with hand lens and washing tests, etc are carried out for plant material meant for consumption. The export inspections are conducted at exporters' premises also to facilitate exports for agricultural commodities meant for consumption.
- Inspection of imported agricultural commodities for preventing the introduction of exotic pests and diseases inimical to Indian fauna and flora through implementation of DIP Act, 1914 and the Plant Quarantine (Regulation of Import into India) Order, 2003 issued there under.
- Inspection of plants and plant material meant for export as per the requirements under International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) 1951 of FAO to facilitate pest free trade.
- Detection of exotic pests and diseases for their containment by adopting domestic quarantine regulations, if introduced.
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