Potato Late Blight Rule

ARM 4.12.1432 PREVENTING SPREAD OF LATE BLIGHT DISEASE OF POTATOES (SOLANUM TUBEROSUM L.)

  1. Definitions in 80-7-105, MCA apply to this rule unless otherwise stated. In addition, the following definitions apply:

    1. "Sale" means to sell, wholesale, offer or expose for sale, exchange, barter, or give away regulated articles as defined in this rule.

    2. "Late blight" means the late blight disease of potato caused by the fungus Phytophthora infestans.

    3. "Regulated articles" means certified seed potatoes and seed potatoes as defined by 80-5-402(1) and (4), MCA including seed potatoes for home gardens; potato plants; and tomato plants including all varieties of Lycopersicon lycopersicum and L. pimpinellifolium. Tomato seeds are not regulated articles.

  2. No individual, firm or nursery shall import regulated articles into Montana except under the following conditions:
    1. Seed potatoes or potato plants:
      1. are produced as certified seed potatoes in the state or country of origin and are certified;
      2. are inspected in the storage warehouse and no late blight is found in the lot; and
      3. are inspected at the shipping point and no late blight is found.
    2. Tomato plants:
      1. are produced in greenhouses not containing other unprotected, susceptible plant materials;
      2. are treated with a registered fungicide from the time the tomato seedlings produce their first pair of true leaves following a schedule recommended by the state\'s cooperative extension service, satisfactory to state plant regulatory officials, for late blight disease control;
      3. are inspected prior to shipment and found free from late blight disease; and
      4. are packed at the point of origin.
  3. States may apply to the department for an exemption from the requirements for tomato plants based on climatic conditions, seasonal occurrence of late blight, and shipping dates that preclude late blight infection.
  4. Each shipment of regulated articles into Montana must be accompanied by an official certificate issued by the government regulatory agency responsible for phytosanitary certification stating that the shipment meets the requirements of this rule. The regulatory agency will follow accepted phytosanitary procedures in assuring that the conditions of this rule are met.
  5. No individual, firm or nursery shall sell or plant in any location in Montana or move within Montana any regulated articles that were imported into Montana in violation of this rule.
  6. The provisions of this rule do not apply to regulated articles being transported in enclosed containers through Montana in interstate or international commerce.
  7. Commercial or table stock potatoes imported into Montana shall not be planted or used as seed potatoes in any location in Montana.
  8. The provisions of (2), (5) and (7) do not apply to any unit of the Montana university system when importing into Montana potato seeds or plants or tomato plants for research, propagation, or education. Such plant materials must be certified free of late blight disease prior to import into Montana or must be placed in a Montana university system quarantine facility.
  9. All cull tubers must be disposed of and rendered nonviable by June 1 of each year.
  10. The department may issue a quarantine order to an individual, firm or nursery (ARM 4.12.1409) where regulated articles are found in Montana in violation of this rule.
    1. The order may prohibit movement and require the removal and destruction of regulated articles.
    2. Firms may be permitted to return unsold tomato plants and potato seeds to out-of-state dealers under conditions approved by the department.
    3. Orders are subject to appeal pursuant to the provisions of the Montana Administrative Procedure Act (Title 2, chapter 4, MCA) and the procedural rules of the department.
  11. Any individual, firm or nursery shall notify the department within 48 hours of discovery of any infestation of late blight, and shall then comply with the instructions of the department for control of the infestation and disposition of infested materials.
  12. Any individual, firm or nursery that violates or aids in the violation of this rule or a quarantine order shall be in violation and subject to penalties provided by 80-7-135, MCA.
  13. This rule shall be reviewed periodically by the department and comments solicited from impacted industries and the public; and the rule amended or repealed as may be appropriate depending upon developments in managing late blight or the effectiveness of this rule.