Development of Generic Irradiation Doses for Quarantine Treatments

Closed for proposals

Project Type

Coordinated Research Project

Project Code

D62008

CRP

1545

Approved Date

11 December 2008

Status

Closed

Start Date

11 June 2009

Expected End Date

11 June 2014

Completed Date

28 July 2015

Description

Regulatory authorities and scientists from many internationally recognised institutions have studied research data on the effectiveness of irradiation as a quarantine treatment against a large range of insect pest species infesting various fruits and vegetables and have concluded the following: A specific irradiation dose that has been shown scientifically to inactivate a species of quarantine importance in various commodities will also inactivate all related arthropod species within that genus and negate the need to develop or validate specific irradiation doses tailored to individual arthropod species. The project will establish validated irradiation doses for non fruit fly species of quaarntine significance. The project results will strengthen existing irradiation standards developed by the International Plant Protection Convention. It will help international trade if Member States accept generic irradiation doses for a wide range of quarantine pests.

Objectives

The overall objective of the CRP is to validate generic treatment doses for groups of arthropods of quarantine significance in international trade. Secondary objectives include an examination of the effects of low oxygen commodity storage and dose rate on efficacy and commodity tolerances. Research may result in a reduction in the existing 400 Gy dose levels for Insecta (except for pupae and adults of Lepidoptera). The work will assist setting doses for the phylum Arthropoda and a few subgroups within that phylum as well as specific minimum doses that provide quarantine security against pests in various commodities.

Specific objectives

Research on specific non fruit fly pest species or groups will be conducted at different locations by researchers using practices that are adequate for phytosanitary applications of irradiation, such as accurate, traceable dosimetry, acceptable pest-rearing methods and precise determinations of efficacy. Efficacy under commercial conditions of oxygen stress, whether intentional or passive, will be tested for certain applications. Tolerance of specific commodities under various commercial conditions will also be conducted.

Impact

The impact of the CRP was to double the number of international standardised phytosanitary irradiation treatments for specific pests. Many more proposals for specific treatments were also proposed as international standards and are being examined for adoption, these include nine generic treatments proposed as a direct result of collaboration within this CRP. These International Standards for Phytosanitary Measures of the International Plant Protection Convention are used as the basis for bilateral trade agreements. Therefore, the CRP played a role is promoting the more widespread adoption of phytosanitary irradiation on a commercial scale. Up until 2004 the commercial application of irradiation was only widely used in Hawaii and Florida for inter-state trade, in order to ship fresh produce from Hawaii to other locations within the USA. International trade between nations began with Australia, which was the first country to use PI for this purpose, exporting irradiated mango to New Zealand beginning in late 2004. In subsequent years facilities in other countries began to irradiate fresh produce for international trade and by 2012 Mexico became the largest exporter of irradiated fruit. At the close of the CRP, commercial scale phytosanitary irradiation was taking place at fifteen facilities in seven countries; at five dedicated irradiation facilities and 10 multipurpose irradiation facilities. Two gamma facilities of a new design recently started operation in Hawaii and Mississippi. From Queensland, Australia now ships mangoes to other states within Australia, to New Zealand and to Malaysia. New Zealand also receives irradiated produce such as tomatoes and capsicum from Australia.

Since 1981, the Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture has supported research, education and cooperation in the use of ionising radiation as a phytosanitary treatment. In this regard, the Food and Environmental Protection Sub-programme has implemented four coordinated research projects in the area of phytosanitary irradiation . These projects established the basis for developing national and international standards on the use of irradiation as a phytosanitary treatment. Specifically, in 2003 the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) approved the International Standard for Phytosanitary Measure (ISPM), Guidelines for the Use of Irradiation as a Phytosanitary Measure (ISPM 18), and subsequently established irradiation treatments under the IPPC Standard on Phytosanitary Treatments for Regulated Pests (ISPM 28). At the start of this CRP in 2009, eight PI treatments were adopted as annexes to ISPM 28, at the close of the CRP in 2014 there were sixteen treatments included in the annexes to the standard ISPM No. 28 Phytosanitary Treatments for Regulated Pests. The impact of the CRP was to double the number of international standardised phytosanitary irradiation treatments for specific pests. Many more proposals for specific treatments were also proposed for consideration of the International Plant Protection Convention, including nine generic treatments proposed as a direct result of collaboration within this CRP.

Another interesting output was the finding that cold treatments can be successfully used in combination with irradiation treatments. Whilst further research is needed, it was found that combining cold temperature and irradiation treatments can be synergistic, lowering the required irradiation dose. Furthermore, many of the findings of this CRP have proven that lower irradiation doses than those currently accepted could be utilised in commercial treatments. For example, the generic PI dose approved by some NPPO’s of 400 Gy (for all insects except pupae and adult Lepidoptera) could be decreased to 250 - 300 Gy based on findings of the CRP. The benefits of being able to use lower treatment doses are particularly important in commercial irradiation facilities where the dose range within the product can be relatively broad. Treatments targeting a reduced minimum dose help reduce the maximum dose received by the product and therefore ensures that fruit quality is maintained by using low intensity irradiation and it can also help optimise the commercial treatment process.

This CRP also generated a great deal of supplementary data on quality effects of different forms of irradiation on traded fruits. In general, there were no significant effects on the nutritional status of irradiated fruits at doses used for phytosanitary purposes.

The international trade of produce which has been irradiated for phytosanitary purposes is growing rapidly. Volumes of irradiated consignments have more than doubled over the duration of this CRP project. Seven countries (Australia, India, Mexico, South Africa, Thailand, USA and Vietnam) have irradiation facilities that are being used for phytosanitary treatments. Within the research community, this CRP research also improved dosimetry practices and the reporting of irradiation doses used to estalish treatments. The first RCM of the CRP emphasised the importance of proper dosimetry methods and their reporting. The reports presented during the subsequent RCMs demonstrated that the participants had acquired a greater understanding of the importance of this key parameter (and the need to work with their dosimetry service to obtain such data) in terms of irradiation research and its implication for commercial use.

Relevance

Although not in international standards and therefore not recognised by all countries, generic phytosanitary irradiation treatments are currently used by some countries for some pest groups. E.g. at least three countries (Malaysia, New Zealand, and the United States of America) accept imports of produce irradiated to 400 Gy as a generic treatment against all pest except lepidoptera. Before the CRP commenced, 3 broad generic dose irradiation treatments had been proposed but not accepted by the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) because it was decided that insufficient research supported them. The relevance of the CRP was its production of large volumes of data in support of generic dose treatments. The CRP generated new data for 34 species in 10 families of insects, 3 families of mites, and 1 family of snails. In addition to doubling the number of phytosanitary irradiation treatments for specific pests, the CRP also proposed the following nine generic phytosanitary irradiation dose treatments: Generic treatment for weevils of the main weevil family Curculionidae, 150 Gy; Generic dose for the family Agromyzidae, 200 Gy; Generic treatment for the family Pseudococcidae (mealybugs), 250 Gy; Generic dose for the family Diaspididae, 250 Gy; Generic dose for eggs and larvae of Lepidoptera, 250 Gy; Revised generic dose for insects other than pupa and adult Lepidoptera (proposed to lower from 400 Gy), 300 Gy; Generic treatment against mites of the family Tetranychidae, 400 Gy; Generic dose for pupae of Lepidoptera; 400 Gy; Generic treatment against all mites in addition to those of the family Tetranychidae (500 Gy). Research conducted by this CRP over 5 years may be sufficient to support generic PI doses for these nine groups of pests in the international standards of the International Plant Protection Convention.

The results of the CRP were published as peer-reviewed journal papers in the special issue of Florida Entomologist (a special issue dedicated to this CRP). This is a considerable body of research information and it may take several years for these data to have an impact. (e.g. the data on effective dose treatments and the effects of temperature and different concentrations of oxygen will add to a growing literature in the subject and will secure a firm scientific foundation for the more widespread adoption of commercial scale phytosanitary irradiation.

CRP Publications

Type

Peer reviewed

Year

2011

Publication URL

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1541-4337.2010.00144.x/full

Description

Phytosanitary Applications of Irradiation. Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food SafetyVolume 10, Issue 2, pages 143–151, March 2011

Country/Organization

USA / USDA ARS

Type

Peer Reviewed

Year

2010

Publication URL

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0969806X10002513

Description

Response of oriental fruit moth, Grapholita molesta (Busck) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae), eggs to gamma radiation

Country/Organization

Brazil / Food Irradiation and Radioentomology Laboratory, Center for Nuclear Energy in Agriculture

Type

Peer reviewed

Year

2012

Publication URL

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0969806X12001429

Description

Generic phytosanitary irradiation treatments

Country/Organization

USA / USDA ARS

Type

Peer Reviewed

Year

2010

Publication URL

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0969806X10002513

Description

Response of oriental fruit moth, Grapholita molesta (Busck) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae), eggs to gamma radiation

Country/Organization

Brazil / Food Irradiation and Radioentomology Laboratory, Center for Nuclear Energy in Agriculture

Type

Peer Reviewed

Year

2012

Publication URL

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0969806X11003318

Description

Effects of gamma irradiation on different stages of mealybug Dysmicoccus neobrevipes (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae). Radiation Physics and Chemistry, Volume 81, Issue 1, p. 97-100.

Country/Organization

Viet Nam / Atomic Energy Institute

Type

Peer reviewed

Year

2011

Publication URL

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1541-4337.2010.00144.x/full

Description

Phytosanitary Applications of Irradiation. Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food SafetyVolume 10, Issue 2, pages 143–151, March 2011

Country/Organization

USA / USDA ARS

Type

Peer Reviewed

Year

2012

Publication URL

http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/resinf/opm/2012/00000023/00000003/art00005

Description

The Pros and Cons of Using Irradiation for Phytosanitary Treatments Raymond J. C. Cannon, Food & Environment Research Agency, Sand Hutton, York, YO41 1LZ, UK, Guy J. Hallman,USDA-ARS, Weslaco, TX, USA and Carl Blackburn, Food and Environmental Protection Section of the JointFAO/IAEA Division, International Atomic Energy Agency, PO Box 100, A-1400, Vienna, Austria

Country/Organization

UK and USA and Joint IAEA/FAO Division

Type

Peer Reviewed

Year

2012

Publication URL

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0969806X12002575

Description

Effects of gamma irradiation on the grape vine moth, Lobesia botrana, eggs

Country/Organization

Syria / Department of Agriculture and Syrian Atomic Energy Commission

Type

Peer Reviewed

Year

2012

Publication URL

http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/resinf/opm/2012/00000023/00000003/art00005

Description

The Pros and Cons of Using Irradiation for Phytosanitary Treatments Raymond J. C. Cannon, Food & Environment Research Agency, Sand Hutton, York, YO41 1LZ, UK, Guy J. Hallman,USDA-ARS, Weslaco, TX, USA and Carl Blackburn, Food and Environmental Protection Section of the JointFAO/IAEA Division, International Atomic Energy Agency, PO Box 100, A-1400, Vienna, Austria

Country/Organization

UK and USA and Joint IAEA/FAO Division

Type

Peer reviewed

Year

2012

Publication URL

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0969806X12001429

Description

Generic phytosanitary irradiation treatments

Country/Organization

USA / USDA ARS

Type

Peer Reviewed

Year

2012

Publication URL

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0969806X12002575

Description

Effects of gamma irradiation on the grape vine moth, Lobesia botrana, eggs

Country/Organization

Syria / Department of Agriculture and Syrian Atomic Energy Commission

Type

Peer Reviewed

Year

2012

Publication URL

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0969806X11003318

Description

Effects of gamma irradiation on different stages of mealybug Dysmicoccus neobrevipes (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae). Radiation Physics and Chemistry, Volume 81, Issue 1, p. 97-100.

Country/Organization

Viet Nam / Atomic Energy Institute

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