As of the end of October, 51 South African consignments of oranges affected by the Citrus Black Spot fungus have been detected, the highest ever number. What’s more, of the 13 rejections registered in this last month, 12 occurred in oranges, despite the fact that since September 15, only oranges declared free of CBS could leave for the EU. Intercitrus, which has already described this measure as a “merely aesthetic” operation, criticised the “zero credibility” of the South African authorities in matters of plant health, writing in a statement: “Either its operators have failed to comply with the regulations they imposed on themselves and continued sending oranges from declared areas. with the disease (those in the Eastern Cape), or ‘Black Spot’ is also widespread in areas officially recognised as exempt.”
In the last three campaigns, the annual average at the end of the Southern Hemisphere import season is already above 40 rejections of citrus from South Africa for CBS, an amount that far exceeds the worst average levels between 2012 and 2014.