Report of a mission carried out in Finland from 15 to 19 April 2002 in  order to audit the plant health
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Report of a mission carried out in Finland from 15 to 19 April 2002 in order to audit the plant health

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EUROPEAN COMMISSIONHEALTH AND CONSUMER PROTECTION DIRECTORATE-GENERALDirectorate F - Food and Veterinary OfficeDG(SANCO)/ 8596/2002 – MRReportON A MISSION CARRIED OUT IN FINLANDFROM 15 TO 19 APRIL 2002 IN ORDER TOAUDIT THE PLANT HEALTH SYSTEMIN THE POTATO SECTORPlease note that factual errors in the draft report have been corrected in bold, italic,type.27/09/02 - 43609TABLE OF CONTENTS1. INTRODUCTION....................................................................................................... 52. MISSION DETAILS................................................................................................... 53. OBJECTIVES OF THE MISSION............................................................................. 54. LEGAL BASIS FOR THE MISSION ........................................................................ 65. BACKGROUND......................................................................................................... 65.1. Previous missions to Finland concerning potatoes ........................................... 65.2. Importance of the potato production in Finland................................................ 75.3. Potato trade in Finland ...................................................................................... 76. MAIN FINDINGS ...................................................................................................... 76.1. Plant health system in Finland ........................................ ...

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EUROPEAN COMMISSION HEALTH AND CONSUMER PROTECTION DIRECTORATE-GENERAL Directorate F - Food and Veterinary Office
Report
DG(SANCO)/ 8596/2002 – MR
ON A MISSION CARRIED OUT IN FINLAND FROM 15 TO 19 APRIL 2002 IN ORDER TO AUDIT THE PLANT HEALTH SYSTEM IN THE POTATO SECTOR
Please note that factual errors in the draft report have been corrected in bold, italic, type.
27/09/02 - 43609
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.
7.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
INTRODUCTION....................................................................................................... 5 MISSION DETAILS................................................................................................... 5 OBJECTIVES OF THE MISSION ............................................................................. 5 LEGAL BASIS FOR THE MISSION ........................................................................ 6 BACKGROUND......................................................................................................... 6 5.1. Previous missions to Finland concerning potatoes ........................................... 6 5.2. Importance of the potato production in Finland................................................ 7 5.3. Potato trade in Finland ...................................................................................... 7 MAIN FINDINGS ...................................................................................................... 7 6.1. Plant health system in Finland .......................................................................... 7 6.1.1. Structure of the plant health system .................................................... 7 6.1.2. Human and financial resources ........................................................... 9 6.1.3. Work planning and assessment of the institution's work .................. 10 6.1.4. Transposition and enforcement of legislation ................................... 10 6.1.5. Contingency plans ............................................................................. 11 6.2. Seed potatoes in Finland ................................................................................. 11 6.2.1. Potato breeding and holding of genetic material............................... 11 6.2.2. Multiplication and certification of seed............................................. 11 6.2.3. Plant health in the genetic material and seed production .................. 12 6.3. Potatoes other than seed in Finland................................................................. 15 6.3.1. Production methods for potatoes in Finland...................................... 15 6.3.2. Situation of specific quarantine pests ................................................ 16 6.3.3. Marketing and processing of potatoes other than seed...................... 20 6.4. Inspection of potato imports............................................................................ 21 6.5. Laboratories..................................................................................................... 21 6.5.1.Virology.............................................................................................22 6.5.2. Nematology ....................................................................................... 22 6.5.3. Bacteriology ...................................................................................... 22 CONCLUSIONS....................................................................................................... 23 7.1. Plant health system in Finland ........................................................................ 23 7.2. Seed potatoes................................................................................................... 23
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8.
9.
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7.3. Potatoes other than seed .................................................................................. 24
7.4. Laboratory analyses......................................................................................... 25
OVERVIEW ............................................................................................................. 25
CLOSING MEETING............................................................................................... 25
RECOMMENDATIONS .......................................................................................... 25
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Abbreviations used in the report
BNYVV C.m.s. EEDC ELISA FVO IF KTTK MAF PCN PCR PLRV PVA PVM PVS PVX PVY PSTV t TSWV
Beet Necrotic Yellow Vein Virus Clavibacter michiganensisssp.sepedonicus Employment Economic and Development Centre Enzyme Linked Immuno Sorbent Assay Food and Veterinary Office of the European Commission Immunofluorescence Kasvintuotannon Tarkastuskeskus= Plant Production Inspection Centre Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry Potato cyst nematode Polymerase chain reaction Potato leaf roll virus Potato virus A Potato virus M Potato virus S Potato virus X Potato virus Y Potato spindle tuber viroid metric tons Tomato spotted wilt virus
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1. INTRODUCTION The mission to Finland was the last of a series of inspections to all Member States to audit the plant health system in the potato sector. A pre-mission questionnaire was sent to the Finnish plant protection authorities in advance of the mission. The answers to this questionnaire provided an overview of the plant health system in the potato sector and of the general health status of the potato production in Finland.
2. MISSION DETAILS The mission in Finland took place from 15 to 19 April 2002. The mission team comprised 2 inspectors from the Food and Veterinary Office of the European Commission (FVO), and 2 Member State experts. Representatives from the Finnish plant protection service accompanied the inspection team during the whole mission. An opening meeting was held on 15 April 2002 in Helsinki with the central competent authority. At this meeting, the objectives of, and itinerary for, the mission were confirmed by the inspection team. A closing meeting with the central competent authority was held in Helsinki on 19 April 2002. The following sites were visited: COMPETENT AUTHORITY VISITS Competent authority Central office Local offices LABORATORY VISITS Official laboratories PLANT HEALTH CONTROL SITES Micro-propagation stations Potato producers Potato packing/despatch stations Potato processors Whole sale markets
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3. OBJECTIVES OF THE MISSION The objectives of the mission were to assess (1) the performance of the various bodies involved in the national plant health system with reference to the potato sector, and (2) the implementation of the relevant EU legislation in this area.
4. LEGAL BASIS FOR THE MISSION The mission was carried out under the mandate of Article 21 of Council Directive 2000/29/EC1 and relevant technical provisions of this Directive. In addition, the following legislation was of particular relevance for this mission: – Council Directive 69/464/EEC2on the control of potato wart disease, – Council Directive 69/465/EEC3on the control of potato cyst nematodes, – Council Directive 93/85/EEC4the control of potato ring rot,on – Council Directive 98/57/EC5on the control ofRalstonia solanacearum, – Commission Directive 93/50/EEC6 the registration of producers, warehouses on and dispatching centres.
5. BACKGROUND Regarding statistical data in this and following chapters: If no reference is given in the text, the figures were provided by Finnish authorities in the pre-mission questionnaire or during the mission. 5.1. Previous missions to Finland concerning potatoes An FVO mission was carried out in 1997 to evaluate the routine surveys and sampling/testing methods forClavibacter michiganensisssp. sepedonicus (C.m.s.). It was concluded that the surveys follow logic priorities, the detection methods are largely in line with the control directive, the laboratories deliver fast results and resultant decisions are taken promptly. Another mission was carried out in 1998 to evaluate the protected zone status forGlobodera pallida. It was concluded that potato imports, exports and production for the national market are all adequately monitored for infection ofG. pallidaand that the protected zone requirements are fulfilled. Control measures forG. rostochiensis, however, did not entirely comply with Council Directive 69/465 as non-resistant varieties were allowed on contaminated land. It was recommended that the morphological identification of potato cyst nematodes (PCN) be supplemented by biochemical methods and that PCN susceptible varieties no longer be allowed on contaminated land
                                                1 L 169, 10.7.2000, p. 1 No. OJ 2 L 323, 24.12.1969, p. 1OJ No. 3OJ No. L 323, 24.12.1969, p. 3 4OJ No. L 259, 18.10.1993, p. 1 5OJ No. L 235, 21.8.1998, p. 1 6 L 205, 17.8.1993, p. 22OJ No.
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5.2. Importance of the potato production in Finland In 1998, potato production represented about 3% of Finland’s gross agricultural output and 13% of the gross output in crop production (EUROSTAT). Over the last three years, around 32,000 ha per year, equivalent to 1.5% of the arable land in Finland, were grown with potatoes. In 2000, a total of 785,000 tons was produced which means a national average of about 25 t/ha. Around 1,500 ha of seed potatoes are grown per year, with a yearly production of around 25,000 t. The main production areas for potatoes are the coastal areas in the South and especially the West of the country. 5.3. Potato trade in Finland Seed potatoes Finland has over the last three years imported 700-800t of seed potatoes per year, mainly from the Netherlands, but also some from Sweden, Germany and Denmark. A similar limited amount is exported, reaching around 1,800t in 2000 of which 2/3 was to non-EU countries. Other potatoes Finland has, over the last three years, imported 10-20,000t of ware potatoes per year. These are mainly main crop ware potatoes from other MS, such as Sweden, Denmark and Germany. There are no direct Third Country imports and the amounts coming via other Member States are negligible – in the order of 100t/year. A few thousand tons of ware potatoes are also exported each year, mainly to neighbouring Third Countries, such as Norway and Russia.
6. MAIN FINDINGS 6.1. Plant health system in Finland 6.1.1. Structure of the plant health system The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF) is the single and central authority as understood in Article 1 of Council Directive 2000/29/EC. Staff from three institutions; the Kasvintuotannon Tarkastuskeskus (Plant Production Inspection Centre = KTTK), the Employment and Economic Development Centres (EEDCs) and the Rural Advisory Centres are responsible for carrying out plant health duties in the potato sector. The Food and Health Department of MAF is responsible for the development of legislation. Figure 6.1, below shows the relations between the various involved institutions. 7
Figure 6.1: Finnish institutions involved in plant health
Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry
  Plant Production Inspection Centre (KTTK)  Seed Testing Department Plant Protection Department
SeedCertification  eedLaboratories
Organic Production Control
Pesticide Division Plant Protection Service
Plant Quarantine Laboratory
Plant Inspection Units in Helsinki, in Turku and in Kouvola
ural Advisory Centres
greement every yea between KTTK and EED on targets etc.
15 Employment & Economic D l m nt ntr EED
6.1.1.1. KTTK The KTTK is a semi-independent organisation, which is part of MAF; it is headed by a Director General nominated by the government. Its budget, which is negotiated annually, is provided by MAF’s Food and Health Department. Two departments of the KTTK are responsible for the plant health issues in the potato sector. The Seed Testing Department is responsible for the certification and quality of seeds and seed potatoes; it conducts laboratory tests on all grades of certified seed potatoes. It also inspects for and supervises outbreaks of, quarantine pests on seed potato producing farms. All findings are reported to the Plant Protection Department, which enforces the control measures. The Plant Protection Department concentrates on ware potato producers and imported and exported potatoes. The Plant Protection Service and Plant Quarantine Laboratory under the Plant Protection Department are responsible for formulating and implementing control measures against quarantine pests.
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The KTTK has a total of nine inspectors based in three Plant Health Units in Helsinki, Turku and Kouvola. There are also three permanent inspectors based in Oulu covering the Seed Potato Centre’s High-grade area. 6.1.1.2. Employment and Economic Development Centres The 15 EEDCs are regional authorities jointly established by the Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ministry of Labour and MAF. Typically, an EEDC consist of three departments: Labour Market, Business and Rural. Staff from the Rural Department assist in the plant health work on the basis of workplans that are agreed during annual meetings between the Plant ProtectionDepartmentand the EEDC management. The EEDC inspectors are responsible for the official control decisions and controls. The Rural department is also responsible for processing claims for compensation. 6.1.1.3. Rural Agricultural Centres The Rural Agricultural Centres offer advice to growers and rural businesses; their budget is funded partly by MAF and partly by fees. Some of the staff are trained and authorised to carry out plant health work for the Plant Protection Service and the EEDCs. This includes sampling, marketing and export controls and surveys of registered potato units. 6.1.2. Human and financial resources Human resources The Plant Protection Service employs 32persons: 12 holding an academic degree (Senior Inspectors or Administrators), 7 laboratory technicians, 7 inspectors and 6 secretaries.In addition to their plant quarantine duties, they are also responsible for implementing the various marketing directives. Some staff are also responsible for carrying out quality control inspections of fruit and vegetables. In 2001, there was a total of 26 man-years work in the plant quarantine and marketing sectors. The Seed Testing Department employs in the Seed Health Laboratory 1 Senior Inspector and 5 laboratory technicians. In the High Grade Area, 1 Senior Inspector and 1 inspector are employed in the phytosanitary field. The EEDCs employ 42 people who are trained and authorised by the KTTK for plant quarantine and plant material duties. In 2001, these staff carried out 14 man-years work in these sectors. The advisory organisations employ 57 people, trained and authorisedby the Plant Protection Service totake samples forplant quarantinepurposes.In addition, 12 are authorised and trained by the Seed Certification Unit for seed inspection work.In 2001, these staff performed 7 man years work in these sectors. All inspectors must have studied either at Colleges of Higher Education or at university. EEDC inspectors receive initial training by the KTTK and 9
practical training by working with experienced authorised inspectors, until they receive authorisation. The initial training is supplemented by various refresher courses that must be attended every year. The inspectors in the advisory organisations are already specialists in the tasks for which they have responsibility. The KTTK provides training in specific sampling techniques and additional training courses are organised as necessary. Financial resources The EEDCs are regional authorities set up by the Ministry of Trade and Industry, MAF and the Ministry of Labour. The majority of their budget is provided by these Ministries from the central government budget. The EU also provides some resources to the EEDCs. The allocation of resources to plant health work is determined each year depending on the work plans and targets agreed between the KTTK and the EEDCs. The advisory organisations receive approximately €20 million from MAF and approximately €30.5 million from charges for inspections and other tasks. The KTTK provide a payment for all plant health related duties that the advisory organisations perform; this is a fixed hourly rate, travel expenses are paid separately. Their resource requirements are negotiated with the KTTK. 6.1.3. Work planning and assessment of the institution's work Work planning MAF and the KTTK establish an annual “performance agreement” or work plan, which may be updated if necessary during the year. The Plant Protection Service in turn establishes an annual work plan and instructions for the EEDCs and the advisory centres. These instructions are reviewed as necessary. The work planning and monitoring is supported by an annual “road show”, where staff from the Plant Protection Service headquarters travel to the EEDCs and conduct meetings with the staff involved with plant health issues. Assessment of the institution's work Details of the actual performance achieved against these plans are made available to the KTTK who assess the performance of individual inspectors. 6.1.4. Transposition and enforcement of legislation MAF is responsible for policy development and the transposition of legislation. There aretwomain types of legislation in the plant health sector, these are Laws which must be adopted by parliament and Ministerial Decrees issued by the relevant Minister. The majority of EU plant health legislation is transposed by Ministerial Decree. These are very specific and may be used as instructions by inspectors; for example, they may contain annual control plans.
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6.2. 
The Åland Islands have a separate system for the adoption of their own and EU legislation, although in practice, State legislation is adopted. This may result in a delay in transposition of EU legislation, although the substance is not affected. 6.1.5. Contingency plans The EEDCs are required to make provisions for emergencies and there is an emergency work plan between the MAF and the KTTK. There are no specific contingency plans for plant health, although MAF will make extra funds available in the event of an emergency. The EEDCs administer a compensation scheme, funded by MAF, for growers affected by quarantine pests and diseases. Staff have access to digital maps and data supplied for subsidies to help assess the amount of compensation that should be paid. Seed potatoes in Finland 6.2.1. Potato breeding and holding of genetic material There was no potato breeding carried out in Finland for many years, however, recently one breeder has commenced activity and produced a few new varieties. There is no potato gene bank in Finland. Seven varieties and two land races of Finnish origin are held in the Nordic Gene Bank, which is a joint Nordic institute located in Sweden. The Seed Potato Centre in Tyrnärvä, near Oulu holds an in-vitro nuclear stock collection for about 40 varieties in production (see below). 6.2.2. Multiplication and certification of seed All seed in Finland of domestic origin derives fromin-vitro micropropagation, carried out at the Seed Potato Centre in Tyrnärvä, near Oulu. This centre is a self-supporting enterprise owned by the state. It produces pre-basic seed starting with around 300,000 minitubers per year and has 250 ha of basic and certified seed grown by 30 contract farms. It is located in the Finnish “high grade area”, which comprises the municipalities Liminka, TemmesandTyrnärväand which was authorised in 19957 to restrict marketing of potato seed to basic grades only. The seed production in Finland centres on this high grade area and the coastal areas around it at the North end of the Bothnian Gulf, where the climate prevents major aphid problems and winter ground frost eliminates volunteer plants between crops. In the classification system there are four classes of pre-basic seed, SS (minitubers), S, SEE and SE, all produced at the Seed Potato Centre or its contract farms (SE). Often there are only three generation’s multiplication in                                                 7OJ No. 60, 18.3.1995, p 31
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