Canadian Food Inspection Agency

Canadian Food Inspection Agency

August 18, 2006 13:49 ET

CFIA: Apple Maggot Found in Abbotsford

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(CCNMatthews - Aug. 18, 2006) - The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has detected apple maggot in several locations all within the Abbotsford, B.C. area. The CFIA discovered the pest during regular survey activities.

All of the findings of apple maggot are very localized and are within a few kilometres of each other. There has been no detection of apple maggot in the prime apple growing regions in the interior of the province.

The apple maggot (Rhagoletis pomonella) is a fly which, in its larval stage, damages apples and other fruit by tunnelling through them. The principal hosts of apple maggot are apple, crabapple and hawthorn trees, however it also occasionally attacks plum, cherry, peach and pear trees. It poses no threat to human health.

Apple maggot is a quarantine pest in Canada and, until these findings, British Columbia has been completely free of the pest. It is found throughout the rest of Canada (except Newfoundland) and is widespread in the U.S. as well. Last year, U.S. officials detected apple maggot in Washington State just across the border from B.C.

The CFIA has immediately expanded the survey for apple maggot in B.C. for the rest of the apple growing season. The Agency is also consulting with the Province of British Columbia and affected stakeholders and industry groups to determine the most appropriate response measures to prevent the spread of this pest into the rest of B.C.

To help prevent the spread of apple maggot to other parts of B.C., please contact the CFIA at (604) 557-4500 if you are planning to move apples, apple trees or other host plants with soil, or nursery stock of apple, crabapple or hawthorn, out of the Abbotsford area.

Owners of apple trees should pick up any fallen apples and dispose of them in municipal garbage (they should not be composted), as this will reduce the spread of the apple maggot by preventing the maggots from entering the soil and completing their life cycle.

For more information on apple maggot, please visit the web site of the B.C. Ministry of Agriculture and Lands at www.agf.gov.bc.ca/cropprot/applemaggot.htm.

Contact Information

  • CFIA
    Media Relations
    Vancouver: (604) 666-1357
    Ottawa: (613) 228-6682