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D-99-03: Phytosanitary import requirements to prevent the entry of Oak Wilt Disease (Bretziella fagacearum (Bretz) Hunt) from the Continental United States

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Effective Date: April 1, 2020
3rd Revision

Subject

This directive outlines the phytosanitary import requirements and related measures for non-propagative articles of oak species: (Quercus spp.), chestnut (Castanea spp.), chinquapin (Castanopsis spp.), and tanbark oak (Lithocarpus spp.), originating from the Continental United States (U.S.), to prevent the entry of oak wilt disease caused by the fungus Bretziella fagacearum (Bretz) Hunt.

This directive is being revised to define high and low-risk periods, and to outline phytosanitary import requirements and related measures for oak articles. In addition, Appendix 1, Elements of a Preventive Control Plan, of this directive has been updated and phytosanitary import requirements for propagative articles have been removed from this directive.

This directive supersedes D-99-03, 2nd revision.

Table of Contents

1.0 Legislative authority

2.0 Fees

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) charges fees in accordance with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency Fees Notice. For information regarding fees associated with imported products, please contact the National Import Service Centre (NISC) For other information regarding fees, please contact any CFIA office or visit the Fees Notice website.

3.0 Definitions, abbreviations and acronyms

Definitions for terms used in this document can be found in the Plant Health Glossary of Terms and in the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) (ISPM 5) Glossary of Phytosanitary Terms, or as defined in the Plant Protection Act, and the Plant Protection Regulations.

For the purpose of this directive, the following terms are defined as follows:

Preventive Control Plan (PCP), a written document that demonstrates how risks to plant/forest resources are identified and controlled. The PCP also includes risks mitigation measures to prevent the introduction of oak wilt disease.

The high-risk period for oak wilt disease (April 1st to July 31st) is the period where environmental and biological conditions are more conducive to the above ground transmission of Bretziella fagacearum via insects vectors.

The low-risk period for oak wilt disease (August 1st to March 31st) is the period where environmental and biological conditions are less conducive to the above ground transmission of Bretziella fagacearum via insects vectors.

4.0 Introduction

Oak wilt disease (OWD), caused by the fungus Bretziella fagacearum (Bretz) Hunt, previously known as Ceratocystis fagacearum, is not known to occur in Canada. It is considered the most serious disease of oak species in North America.

Oak and other related species, such as chestnut, are valuable hardwood species in the Deciduous Great Lakes-St. Lawrence and Acadian Forest regions in Canada. Round wood and sawn wood of these oak species are in high demand for manufacturing furniture and flooring. Additionally, these tree species provide added value to the landscape of urban areas.

Natural spread of OWD occurs below ground via root grafting between infected trees and healthy ones and above ground by insect vectors. The main means of introduction and spread in Canada would likely be via the log pathway (importation from infested areas of the U.S.) through the dispersal of spores from fungal mats by insect vectors. The fruity smell produced by the fungal mats on infected trees attracts a number of insects species. Evidence suggests that Carpophilus spp. and Colopterus spp. are the primary sap beetle genera involved in the spread of the fungus. Once the disease is introduced into an area, human-mediated movement of infected material over long distances would spread the fungus to new areas.

Once OWD is established, it is very difficult to eradicate or to control its natural spread. Phytosanitary import requirements for regulated articles, such as logs and firewood, are essential to prevent the introduction of this pathogen into Canada. The movement of regulated articles between the months of April and July presents a higher risk for introduction as the disease can be dispersed from infected articles by insect vectors. The removal of bark from logs reduces the risk of spreading the fungus.

All species of oak can be infected by Bretziella fagacearum. While red oak group species are highly susceptible and usually die shortly after infection, white oak group species demonstrate some level of resistance to Bretziella fagacearum, with lower disease incidence and very rarely produce fungal mats in natural conditions. This suggests that white oak logs would not be a significant means for introduction and spread of OWD.

There is a lack of evidence to suggest that host nursery stock serves as a potential pathway for the spread of OWD. Similarly, the movement of branches or wreaths made from host species would not be a pathway for the introduction of OWD. The main means for spreading OWD is through trade or human assisted movement of logs and firewood from infested to non-infested areas.

5.0 Scope

Any person importing regulated articles of oak (Quercus spp.), chestnut (Castanea spp.), chinquapin (Castanopsis spp.) or tanbark oak (Lithocarpus spp.) must meet the requirements of this directive in order to prevent the introduction into Canada of oak wilt disease (Bretziella fagacearum (Bretz) Hunt).

5.1 Regulated pests

Oak wilt disease (Bretziella fagacearum (Bretz) Hunt)

5.2 Regulated articles

of all species of oak (Quercus spp.), chestnut (Castanea spp.), chinquapin (Castanopsis spp.) and tanbark oak (Lithocarpus spp.).

Note: These articles may also be subject to other requirements, in addition to those specific to the scope of this directive. Please consult the list of all Plant Health directives or the CFIA's Automated Import Reference System (AIRS) for more information.

5.3 Exempted articles

of all species of oak (Quercus spp.), chestnut (Castanea spp.), chinquapin (Castanopsis spp.) and tanbark oak (Lithocarpus spp.).

5.4 Regulated areas

A list of states in the Continental U.S. that are regulated for OWD can be found in Appendix 2.

5.5 Risk periods: high-risk and low-risk periods

6.0 Specific requirements

6.1 Import requirements for regulated articles

6.1.1 From non-regulated States in the Continental U.S.

6.1.2 From regulated States in the Continental U.S.

Regulated articles may be imported from regulated states either through phytosanitary certification at the point of origin (Section 6.1.2.1) or by an approved Canadian processing facility (Section 6.1.2.2).

6.1.2.1 Importation of certified regulated articles

A permit to import is not required

A Phytosanitary Certificate is required

A Phytosanitary Certificate must accompany each consignment and must include the following additional declaration:

"The material was produced in a county where oak wilt disease (Bretziella fagacearum) does not occur."

Or

The Phytosanitary Certificate must indicate in the treatment section that the material was fumigated with methyl bromide. Temperature, dosage, concentration and duration of the treatment must be indicated in the treatment section of the phytosanitary certificate and the treatment must be done in accordance with the treatment manual of the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.

Or

The Phytosanitary Certificate must include in the treatment section, that the material has undergone another treatment pre-approved by the CFIA and treatments details must be identified in the treatment section of the phytosanitary certificate. Importers should contact the CFIA to identify pre-approved treatments.

Note: Regulated articles may be imported from U.S. regulated states with an official certificate of origin in lieu of a phytosanitary certificate. Prior to this, the CFIA will need to review and approve a system-based program that has been proposed by USDA-APHIS or a State Plant Health Authority, as a mechanism for certifying origin. The current directive may be updated accordingly.

6.1.2.2 Importation by an approved Canadian processing facility

A permit to import is required.

The certification requirements specified in Section 6.1.2.1 may be waived if an importer has obtained a Permit to Import for processing, issued pursuant to Section 43 of the Plant Protection Regulations.

Before a Section 43 Permit to Import can be issued, the facility wishing to be recognized as an approved processing facility must develop a Preventive Control Plan (PCP) as described in Appendix 1 of this directive, and submit it to the CFIA for review and approval. The permit to import will be issued once the CFIA has approved the PCP and the facility has passed inspection by CFIA.

The PCP is a written document that demonstrates the systems-based approach developed by the processing facility to ensure that risks associated with OWD are mitigated. The PCP shall include processes for receiving, segregating, treating and processing regulated wood products and timber waste.

The Permit to Import and the PCP must be renewed and reviewed, respectively, each year. If, at any time, the approved processing facility changes any of its practices, the PCP must be amended and submitted to the CFIA for review and approval.

The specific import conditions will be outlined on the permit. Those conditions will be as follows (note: herein means "in the permit"):

i) Phytosanitary import requirements for an approved Canadian processing facility

a. General requirements

b. Specific requirements for red oak group (Appendix 3) during high-risk and low-risk periods

b.1 High-risk period (From April 1st to July 31st)

b.2 Low-risk period (From August 1st to March 31st)

c. Specific requirements for the White oak group (see Appendix 3), chestnut (Castanea spp.), chinquapin (Castanopsisspp.) and tanbark oak (Lithocarpusspp.)

Note: The CFIA may review other OWD risk mitigation measures upon request. Science-based data should be submitted to the CFIA for evaluation. If the CFIA determines that there are additional acceptable mitigation measures, this directive will be updated accordingly.

6.2 Inspection requirements for processing facilities, regulated articles and review of Preventive Control Plan

6.2.1 Inspection frequency and timing at approved processing facilities (Section 43 permit)

The CFIA will conduct inspections at all approved processing facilities which import regulated articles from regulated states in the Continental U.S. Generally, two inspections will be conducted each year. One inspection will occur during the high-risk period and the second will occur during the low-risk period. Additional inspections may be required to assess or re-assess the facilities' PCP.

6.2.2 Purpose of the inspections at approved processing facilities (Section 43 permit)

During any inspection, a CFIA inspector may request to review receiving and shipping records and any other relevant documentation, and may walk through the facility in order to verify safeguarding measures aimed at preventing the OWD from spreading into the surrounding environment.

6.2.3 Inspection of consignments of certified regulated articles

Some processing facilities may import regulated articles under Section 6.1.2.1 (certification at point of origin). CFIA inspectors may inspect consignments and verify that:

7.0 Non-compliance

Any costs incurred due to non-compliance (treatment, disposition, removal, etcetera) will be the responsibility of the importer.

Specific to Section 6.1.2.1, the CFIA will advise the National Plant Protection Organization (NPPO) of the U.S. of any non-compliance as per directive D-01-06: Canadian phytosanitary policy for the notification of non-compliance and emergency action.

For facilities that import regulated articles for processing under a special Permit to Import, such a Permit to Import may be cancelled (revoked) at any time if the person to whom the Permit to Import has been issued has not complied with any one of the conditions set out in the Permit to Import or the provisions of the Plant Protection Act and Regulations. A Permit to Import may also be cancelled where there are reasonable grounds to suspect that the imported consignment is infested, or that the pest status in the country of origin or the country from where the material was shipped has changed. There is no refund for cancelled Permits to Import.

The CFIA will follow the guiding principles in its Compliance and Enforcement Policy when informing regulated parties, assessing and monitoring compliance and responding to instances of non-compliance.

Appendix 1: Elements of a Preventive Control Plan

A processing facility must submit a Preventive Control Plan (PCP) for review and approval by the CFIA, prior to importing regulated articles under Section 6.1.2.2. A list of local CFIA offices is available.

Applicants must apply for and receive a Permit to Import (CFIA/ACIA form 5256) prior to obtaining regulated articles from regulated areas. Applications need to be submitted to the CFIA Permit Office identified on the Application for Permit to Import.

The issuance of a Permit to Import is contingent upon approval of the facility by the CFIA and compliance of the facility with the terms and conditions of this directive. The PCP should be reviewed on an ongoing basis by the facility staff to ensure that the procedures and processes effectively address the risk associated with OWD. The PCP must be re-approved by the CFIA if the facility wants to change it.

Each facility will need to determine the elements that need to be included in its PCP.  The following elements should be considered as they develop their PCP:

1. Process control

Red oak logs must be processed or debarked to control the risk associated with OWD.

Considerations:

Red oak logs received in the high-risk period (April 1st to July 31st ) have to be processed or debarked within 30 days after importation.

Red oak logs received in the low-risk period (August 1st to March 31st) have to be processed or debarked by April 1st. Exceptionally, logs imported during the month of March may be processed or debarked within 30 days after importation.

The facility must indicate:

  1. The measures that will be taken to ensure that red oak logs from regulated states in the U.S. are processed or debarked within the deadlines (for example segregation system, import documents).
  2. The verification procedures that will be in place to make sure that the debarking/processing requirements are followed (for example identifying a trained responsible person to conduct the verification, verification frequency).
  3. The steps that will be taken following a deviation from the debarking/processing requirements (determining the cause and preventing reoccurrence).

Facility monitoring procedures for red oak logs.

Consideration:

Logs must be monitored visually upon arrival at the facility during the high-risk period (April 1st to July 31st) for evidence of signs of OWD.

The facility must indicate:

  1. The effective visual monitoring procedure that is in place.
  2. That facility employees are expected to be able to recognize signs and symptoms of OWD on imported logs. The facility has to maintain training records of employees responsible for this task.
  3. That CFIA will be immediately notified of any non-compliant logs and that all non-compliant logs will be processed or disposed of within 24 hours of their detection.

2. Employee training

Consideration:

It is mandatory that employees who are involved in log reception, scaling and sorting receive adequate training to be able to recognize signs and symptoms of OWD.

The facility must indicate:

  1. The training material that is provided to the employees.
  2. How the effectiveness of the training is monitored, verified, and maintained for all employees involved.
  3. A list of trainees.

3. Surveillance program

An Oak Wilt surveillance program report on oak trees within 300 metres from the log storage area.

The facility must have in place an oak wilt surveillance program that covers a 300-metre perimeter around the regulated oak logs storage area. The report must contain the following elements:

The surveillance must be conducted between April 1st and August 31st. The report must be signed by an independent forestry professional, and submitted to the CFIA local office each year no later than September 30th. Furthermore, The CFIA must be immediately notified if any signs of OWD are found during the surveillance.

4. Waste disposal

Bark residues or timber waste must be disposed of or processed in a manner to maintain regulatory compliance.

Considerations:

Disposal/processing of bark residues and timber waste is required to prevent the spread of OWD in the environment.

Timber waste is not permitted to be used as firewood without treatment, as per D-01-12.

Procedures must be in place to ensure that timber waste is not used or sold for firewood, unless it's treated as per D-01-12.

The facility must describe the following:

1. Disposition procedures.

The following methods may be used to dispose of or process oak articles:

2. What verification procedures will be in place to make sure that the measures for the disposition/processing requirements are followed (for example identifying a responsible person to conduct the verification, verification frequency).

3. What steps will be taken following a deviation from the disposition/processing requirements (determining the cause and preventing reoccurrence).

5. Receiving, transportation and storage

Receiving and storage of regulated articles.

For logs of white oak group (Quercus section Quercus), and chestnut (Castanea spp.), chinquapin (Castanopsis spp.) and tanbark oak (Lithocarpus spp.):

Consideration:

Logs must be segregated upon arrival from red oak group logs and from any other logs (regulated or not regulated) and stored in an identified area.

If the processing facility has no segregation system, the requirements for red oak group regulated articles will apply to all articles.

The facility must indicate:

1. The measures that will be taken to ensure that logs of white oak group, chestnut (Castanea spp.), chinquapin (Castanopsis spp.) and tanbark oak (Lithocarpus spp.), from regulated states in the U.S. are segregated from red oak group logs and from any other logs.

2. The verification procedures that will be in place to make sure that the measures for the segregation requirements are followed (for example identifying a trained responsible person to conduct the verification, verification frequency).

3. The steps that will be taken following a deviation to the segregation requirements (determining the cause and preventing occurrence)

Transportation of regulated articles.

The CFIA issues a movement certificate (MC) to facilities holding a Permit to Import to allow the transportation of regulated products from the facility to another facility or for disposal or pre-approved treatment. The facility must describe the procedure and provide the names of the employees responsible for requesting, retaining and verifying movement certificates. Specific information such as the movement certificate number, type of product, quantity, date of shipment and origin of the consignment must be kept for each consignment covered by a movement certificate. The movement certificate is mandatory to move any regulated article outside the approved processing facilities.

6. Traceability and control

The facility has to put in place a system that ensures that each consignment of regulated articles is traceable at each step from the reception of logs to the disposition of residues and waste.

7. Records

Records are evidence that the facility has implemented the preventive controls and that they are effective to meet the phytosanitary requirements. The facility will generate a number of different types of records, suitable to their operations, which must be available for review by the CFIA.

The facility will need to identify records associated with each element, and retain them for a period of two years. Some examples may include:

Appendix 2: States in the Continental U.S. that are regulated for Oak Wilt Disease

List of States in The Continental U.S. That Are Regulated For Oak Wilt Disease

Appendix 3: List of regulated oak species

Red oak group (Quercus section Lobatae)

The red oak group includes but is not limited to, the following species:

White oak group (Quercus section Quercus), and chestnut (Castanea spp.), chinquapin (Castanopsisspp.) and tanbark oak (Lithocarpusspp.)

The white oak group includes but is not limited to, the following species:

Appendix 4: Other related directives

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