Effective immediately, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is amending the Karnal bunt regulated areas in La Paz, Maricopa, and Pinal Counties in Arizona. Specifically, APHIS is reducing the regulated area in La Paz and Maricopa Counties and increasing the regulated area in Pinal County. APHIS is also removing wheat, durum wheat, and triticale harvested for silage from the list of regulated articles.
Following a review of available information, APHIS determined that 167 fields qualify for deregulation in accordance with the criteria listed in 7 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 301.89-3(f). Accordingly, restrictions are no longer required on the interstate movement of Karnal bunt regulated articles from these areas. APHIS is removing a total of 3,911 acres of Colorado Indian Tribes land from the list of regulated areas in La Paz County and 2,622 acres in Maricopa County, Arizona.
In addition, APHIS is adding 3,488 acres in the Maricopa area of Pinal County, Arizona, to the Karnal bunt regulated area in response to the detection of 83 Karnal bunt-positive fields. Following the completion of field surveys of Karnal bunt regulated areas, we have determined that these fields meet the criteria for regulation outlined in 7 CFR 301.89-3(e).
APHIS is taking this regulatory action to prevent the spread of Karnal bunt from Arizona. Karnal bunt is a pest that affects wheat quality. APHIS regulates this plant disease because many trading partners require that U.S. wheat be certified as grown in areas free of Karnal bunt.
APHIS will follow this emergency action with the publication of an interim rule in the Federal Register. The Karnal bunt regulations can be found at the following website:
Additionally, based on the findings of a pathway analysis completed on January 11, 2017, APHIS is removing wheat, durum wheat, and triticale harvested for silage from the list of regulated articles listed at 7 CFR 301.89-2. The pathway analysis concluded that wheat, durum wheat, and triticale harvested for silage from the Karnal bunt regulated areas pose a negligible likelihood of introducing the disease into new areas. Growing wheat, durum wheat, and triticale for silage that will be fed to livestock provides another production option for farmers in addition to grain.
Under IPPC standards, Tilletia indica is considered to be a pest that is present in portions of Arizona and is under eradication in the United States.