The U.S. Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is implementing a new directive regarding all exports of soybeans to China (a copy of the directive can be found here). The directive applies to all exports of soybeans from the U.S. to be imported into China that need a phyto-sanitary certificate (APHIS Form 691) AND is the first step in the “system approach” for which APHIS and USDA will be providing more details soon. One aspect of the “system approach” is that China AQSIQ may require some actions like preventing weed seed exposure to the environment, denaturing or cleaning of weed seeds from shipments for which the Form 691 remarks section indicates “This consignment exceeds 1% FM.” The “systems approach” will be implemented in agreement with China’s AQSIQ that assures that no shipments of U.S. soybeans will be rejected because of a weed seed content or foreign material.
For the next two years, no shipments of U.S. soybeans will be rejected because of a weed seed content or foreign material and that the response will be monitored for 2 years before any additional action is taken.
ACTION: We have explained to APHIS that Phytosanitary Certification Change for Soybean Shipments Going to China potentially cuts across contracts and, if necessary, should be taken at the beginning of a crop year with advance notice before the growing season. We have also indicated that if they must deploy during this marketing year a minimum of 3 month grace period is needed to accommodate any potential contractual changes.