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EPPO provides update on ToBRFV in Europe

The Secretariat of the European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization (EPPO) has provided an update on ToBRFV infections through its Global Database.

The ToBRFV virus is harmless to humans and animals but can cause serious damage to crops. Since last year all European countries are obliged to share news on any contamination with their European partners.

Spain
The Tomato brown rugose fruit virus (Tobamovirus, ToBRFV – EPPO Alert List) was first detected in Spain in October 2019 in one greenhouse in the municipality of Vícar, Almería province (Andalucía) (EPPO RS 2019/238). As a result of delimiting surveys, the presence of ToBRFV has been confirmed in two new tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) greenhouses in Vicar and El Ejido (Almeria) with surfaces of 1.36 ha and 0.50 ha respectively. In these two greenhouses, plants had been grown from the same seed lot as in the first glasshouse found to be infected. In other greenhouses where the same seed lot has been used, the presence of ToBRFV was not detected. 

Surveys carried out in other tomato greenhouses owned by the two producers who had the findings in their greenhouses, detected the presence of ToBRFV in two new greenhouses both in Vicar (Almería) with an area of 1.13 ha and 0.99 ha respectively. Later in January, another greenhouse in Vicar (0.89 ha) was found to be infected. As the first reported case was on grafted tomatoes, surveys were also carried out in the greenhouse where the rootstock had been produced and did not detect ToBRFV. In total, 6 greenhouses were found infected: 5 in Vicar and 1 in El Ejido, both in Almería province (Andalucía), covering an area of 6.25 ha. A total of 55,970 plants of tomato have been destroyed. Eradication measures are applied.

The pest status of Tomato brown rugose fruit virus in Spain is officially declared as: Present, under eradication.

Netherlands
The Tomato brown rugose fruit virus (Tobamovirus, ToBRFV – EPPO Alert List) was first detected in the Netherlands in October 2019 in one greenhouse in the municipality of Westland (RS 2019/209). The virus was further detected in other tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) greenhouses. As of 11 February 2020, 17 outbreaks are reported: 8 in the municipality of Westland, 4 in the municipality of Hollands Kroon, 2 in the municipality of Brielle, 1 in the municipality of Reimerswaal, 1 in the municipality of Haarlemmermeer, 1 in the municipality of Midden-Delfland. The identity of the virus was confirmed by sequencing (NGS). In addition, 4 other cases are suspected (based on RT-PCR) but still need to be confirmed by sequencing. Among the 4 suspected cases, 2 are in the municipality of Westland. In all cases, phytosanitary measures are applied. The NPPO of the Netherlands also surveys seed companies, and ToBRFV was detected in tomato seed imported from Peru (a country where the virus is not known to occur).

France
The NPPO of France recently informed the EPPO Secretariat of the first detection of Tomato brown rugose fruit virus (Tobamovirus, ToBRFV – EPPO Alert List) on its territory. Symptomatic plants of tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) grown for fruit production in a greenhouse (2.4 ha) were observed by a grower at the end of January 2020 in Finistère department (Bretagne region). The identity of the virus was confirmed by the National Reference Laboratory in early February 2020. Phytosanitary measures were taken to eradicate the disease, including the destruction of plants and growing media, and the disinfection of facilities. The origin of the outbreak is still under investigation and traceability studies are being carried out. The plantlets had been imported from the United Kingdom and derived from seed produced in the Netherlands.

The pest status of Tomato brown rugose fruit virus in France is officially declared as: Transient, actionable, under eradication.

For more information:
gd.eppo.int


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