The European Nurserystock Association (ENA) examined the current situation of Xylella fastidiosa during the last General Assembly, held in Essen on January 25th, 2018, and issued a series of recommendations targeted to ENA members and European nurseries. Though European nurseries are aware of the risks posed by this bacterium; ENA agreed on the need to stress some aspects of disease management:
- Nurseries carry great responsibility for plant health in general and in relation to the prevention of spread of Xylella fastidiosa in particular.
- At all levels, political, commercial and production, the decisions taken should be based on sound scientific evidence.
- Current scientific evidence and legislation does not justify a movement ban of plants from an entire country, or from some regions of a country, simply because that country contains demarcated zones or infected zones for Xylella.
- All EU countries are obligated to continuously monitor the pest-free areas in line with legal requirements and official international standards.
- All industry operators must clearly understand the different regulatory and risk implications relating to host plants, species that have been found infected by Xylella in the EU, and the specified plants, species that have been found infected in the rest of the world.
- All nurseries must rapidly become aware of the obligation to sample and test plants in production of the following species before trading them: Coffea, Lavandula dentata, Nerium oleander, Olea europaea, Polygala myrtifolia and Prunus dulcis.
- Traceability needs to be ensured; all nurseries, wholesalers and retailers must be aware of the obligation to keep records, for at least 3 years, of each lot of plants of the following species that arrives to or departs from their facilities, including the details of the supplier or the professional customer: Coffea, Lavandula dentata, Nerium oleander, Olea europaea, Polygala myrtifolia and Prunus dulcis.
The original news is available on the ENA website: https://www.enaplants.com/ena-statement-on-xylella
ENA is among the stakeholders involved in XF-ACTORS and POnTE, research projects funded by the EU within the H2020 programme. Given the economic relevance caused by the bacterium Xylella fastidiosa, a part of the projects is dedicated to the strengthening of the relations between research and stakeholders. Therefore, ENA is part of the stakeholder board of both projects.