Fresno County under citrus quarantine to keep pest threat contained

FRESNO COUNTY, Calif. (KFSN) -- All of Fresno County is now under a citrus quarantine as the threat of the Asian Citrus Psyllid remains a huge concern for local growers.

The quarantine means more restrictions will be in place to move citrus and other plants in and out of the area.

The Asian Citrus Psyllid (ACP) is no bigger than a grain of rice, but this one tiny bug has the power to wipe out an entire crop. Ryan Jacobsen, CEO of the Fresno Farm Bureau said ACP is so dangerous because of the disease it is known to carry-- huanglongbing (HLB).

"Florida has absolutely seen wide spread devastation," said Ryan Jacobsen, CEO of the Fresno Farm Bureau. "That is where there is very, very, potential devastation when it comes to the citrus industry."

HLB or Citrus Greening Disease kills citrus trees and has no cure. That is according to the citrus pest and disease prevention program. If a tree is infected with HLB, it will die. Luckily, HLB has not been detected in Fresno County, but if found the impact could be devastating.

"You can't think of this pest as exclusively only affecting citrus because it is possibly going to be hitch hiking on another type of plant," said Jacobsen.

Jacobsen said nurseries that grow landscape plants and crops also fall under the quarantine. But he also said it does not mean people can't move fruits and plants in and out of the county. It just means stricter regulations and more inspections.

"It's making sure that the movement of goods is consisting of certain protocols set into place by the CDFA. Some of that includes just tarping loads, making sure it's as free of some of that other debris besides fruit." said Jacobsen.
Copyright © 2021 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.