From a press release from the Ministry of Foreign Trade;
Costa Rica is the only country that can export ornamental plants larger than 18 inches to the United States.
San Jose, June 26, 2012. Today the Federal Register of the United States issued an amendment to its phytosanitary regulations, which allows the importation of ornamental plants of the species of Dracaena marginata larger than 18 inches (46 centimeters) from Costa Rica, giving a competitive advantage to national exporters.
"This is excellent news, which will stimulate the sector's exports to the U.S. because of the competitive advantage. This is the result of interagency efforts, which showed that the size restriction did not correspond to the rules governing international trade for products of plant origin. This an important victory, which reaffirms our commitment to defend the interests of our exporters within the framework of the agreements", explained the Minister of Foreign Trade in Costa Rica, Anabel Gonzalez.
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The United States will allow entry of Costa Rican ornamental plants with stems over 18 inches and up to 54 inches high.
This potential market opening occurred as a result of the "Clean Stock Program” for the export of Dracaena to the Unites States, which culminated in April 2009.
The U.S. has published proposed regulations to authorize Costa Rican exports of ornamental plants more than 18 inches tall.
A press release from Costa Rica's foreign ministry states that the USA proposes to modify regulations that currently restrict exports of plants from the Dracaena species that are more than 46 cm tall.
Costa Rica will implement a program to export ornamental plants larger than 45 centimeters to the U.S.
The plan, developed by the Phytosanitary Service (SFE), will be implemented in June and July and seeks to remove an existing restriction to export plants larger than 45 centimeters to the United States.
Costa Rica and the U.S. will sign a work plan document to enable the export of large-sized ornamental plants.
It includes topics such as good plant health practices, production locations, harvesting procedures, packaging plants, and phytosanitary certifications for exporting, among others.