In line with EU policy, NVWA will increase the inspection rates for roses from Africa this spring, due to the African false codling moth. According to the EU, the moth is a danger to economically important crops in Europe. Such as the fruits of citrus plants, peach/nectarine plants, capsicum plants and cut roses. African growers have been taking measures against the moth for some time.
The false codling moth, Thaumatobia leucotreta, is occupying minds in Brussels. Countries around the Mediterranean region reportedly sounded the alarm over fears that the moth is establishing itself there through the import of roses from Africa, thereby potentially threatening host plants such as citrus. The debate in the EU affects rose cultivation in Africa because cut roses are among the moth’s host plants.
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) was commissioned by the European Commission to investigate the risks, releasing its findings In October 2023. According to EFSA, cut roses from Africa could lead to the introduction of the false codling moth in the EU. In northern and central Europe, the moth can only survive in warm greenhouses with cut roses and peppers. In southern Europe, however, the moth could actually establish itself, posing a threat to crops, including citrus.