Update on the situation of Pepino mosaic potexvirus in the EPPO region
In order to better understand the present situation of Pepino mosaic potexvirus in the EPPO region, a questionnaire has been sent to all EPPO member countries on the possible occurrence of this virus in their tomato crops and on intercepted consignments. Answers received at the EPPO Secretariat are presented below.
Pepino mosaic potexvirus has never been found in Algeria.
Pest status: Absent, confirmed by surveys.
The virus has not been found on imported consignments.
A survey was carried out and 40 samples from different regions were tested. Pepino mosaic potexvirus was not found in Austria. It was not detected on imported consignments.
Pepino mosaic potexvirus has never been found in Cyprus.
In autumn 2001, the virus was found in a glasshouse producing tomato fruits. It is not known how the virus was introduced into the glasshouse. No findings of Pepino mosaic potexvirus have been made during surveys carried out in 2002.
No infections of Pepino mosaic potexvirus have been found in Estonia, nor on imported consignments. However, this conclusion is made only on the basis of visual inspections for symptoms, the first laboratory tests will be carried out in summer 2002.
Pepino mosaic potexvirus was detected in one tomato glasshouse in Bretagne, in February 2000; and in another tomato glasshouse in Pays de Loire, in February 2001. The origin of these outbreaks could not be traced. An eradication programme was set up. During surveys carried out in 2001/2002, the virus was not found again, and is considered as eradicated in France. In 2001, France intercepted 7 consignments infected by the virus from Spain (including Canary islands) and from Morocco (see below). In 2002, no interceptions were made.
Pest status: Absent, pest eradicated.
Three outbreaks of the virus have been recorded in Germany, exclusively at production sites of tomato fruits.
1. Hessen, 1999. Few symptoms on fruits, no symptoms on leaves. The measures taken (uprooting of infected plants, composting with calcium cyanamid, under official control) resulted in eradication. The propagating material (young plants) was purchased from a Dutch company.
2. Thüringen, 2000. Few symptoms on fruits and on leaves. Hygenic measures were taken during the growing season. At the end of the production period, the infected material was destroyed, and extensive disinfection measures were applied. However, eradication was not achieved, as outbreaks occurred again during the 2001 and 2002 growing seasons. In 2000 and 2001, young plants were purchased from a Dutch company, whereas in 2002 half of the plants were supplied by a German company. There is no clear indication whether the new outbreaks are due to lack of effectiveness of the eradication measures, or to new introductions on young plants.
3. Hamburg 2001. Few symptoms on fruits and leaves. Some of the infected varieties were grown from certified seeds, others were produced from farm-saved seeds. The infected plants were destroyed, and hygienic measures were taken. So far, it is not known whether these measures have been effective. In this case again, the origin of the infection is not known, it may however not be excluded that the virus was introduced with tomato fruits that the company had bought from other origin for trading at the local market.
On imports, Pepino mosaic potexvirus was found on tomato fruits from the Netherlands, Spain, Canary Islands, Belgium, Italy and Morocco. It has not been found on consignments of young tomato plants.
Pest status: Present only in two premises, under protected cultivation. Transient: Actionable, under eradication.
Pepino mosaic potexvirus does not occur in Greece. It has not been found on imported consignments.
Pepino mosaic potexvirus does not occur in Hungary. It has not been found on imported consignments.
The virus has not been confirmed on growing plants in Jersey. However, it has been confirmed on imported consignments between 8th and 12th February 2001, and on 20th March 2002.
Pepino mosaic potexvirus does not occur in Latvia and has never been intercepted on imported consignments.
From random serological tests carried out in Malta, no positive results were found. However, an intensive survey for Pepino mosaic potexvirus will start later this year.
In 2001, Pepino mosaic potexvirus had been detected on tomato fruit in packing material belonging to a Moroccan export company, at a supermarket in France. After being notified of this finding, the Moroccan Plant Protection Service made a survey on the 175 ha of tomato belonging to the export company concerned. The presence of the virus was not detected. Since then, regular surveys for this virus have been carried out in fields of vegetable growers and gave negative results.
The virus has been found in only one case in domestic production in Norway. It was found in March 2001, in a glasshouse producing tomato fruits. Shortly after, eradication measures were carried out, involving destruction of all plant material and growing media and disinfection of the glasshouses of the firm. The outbreak occurred near Stavanger, in the main tomato-producing area in Norway. Surveys were carried out in 19 other firms in the area, but the virus was not detected. Neither was the source of infection found. The outbreak was considered successfully eradicated in April 2001. So far, monitoring has not resulted in new findings of the virus in Norway.
Pepino mosaic potexvirus has been found in several cases on imported tomato fruits in Norway.
Pepino mosaic potexvirus was detected in 2001 on 2 tomato plants in a glasshouse of a Dutch cultivar. The virus was detected during varietal tests and its presence was confirmed by ELISA tests. The circumstances in which the virus was detected might suggest that is was introduced into that place. Infected plants were destroyed. The virus has not been detected in imported consignments.
During 2001, a survey was done in Portugal to detect Pepino mosaic potexvirus in tomato. This survey was carried out in tomato nurseries, glasshouses and open fields in several regions of the country. In total, 53 places of production were inspected and 813 samples were processed in the laboratory. All results were negative, indicating that the virus is absent in Portugal. The virus was not found in imported consignments, but no inspections or sampling were specifically done to detect it on imported tomatoes.
The virus has never been recorded in Romania, so far.
Pepino mosaic potexvirus does not occur in Slovak Republic and has never been intercepted on imported consignments.
In 2001, Pepino mosaic potexvirus was subject to an official survey in Slovenia. The survey was performed by the Phytosanitary inspection service. The officially approved laboratory of the National Institute of Biology proposed test methods in 2000, and provided technical information on virus symptoms and instructions for sampling in a Manual for Phytosanitary Inspection in 2001. During this survey of glasshouses, 62 samples were taken and tested: 51 samples of tomato, 1 pepper, 3 ornamental plants and 7 weed hosts. All samples gave negative results.
Pest status: Absent, confirmed by survey.
Until now, no infected consignment has been intercepted in Slovenia.
During late autumn 2001, Pepino mosaic potexvirus was found once in tomato production. This was the first record for Sweden. Repeated samplings were negative. Destruction of the plants followed by careful disinfection of the glasshouse and other facilities were carried out in November 2001, which is the normal time to finish the production of the year. In 2002, about 30 production sites were inspected and so far, no positive samples were found.
On imports, Pepino mosaic potexvirus was found in 7 samples of imported tomato fruits during the winter 2000/2001.
Pepino mosaic potexvirus has never been found in Tunisia or on imported consignments.
Pepino mosaic potexvirus does not occurs in Turkey.
In UK, several outbreaks of Pepino mosaic potexvirus have been reported since 1999 in glasshouse tomatoes in various regions (Kent, Cheshire, East Yorkshire, Isle of Wight, North Yorkshire, Somerset, South Wales, West Sussex). All outbreak crops have been grown from seed supplied from the Netherlands and propagated either in the Netherlands or UK. All outbreaks have been eradicated by destruction of the plants at the end of the growing season. So far, there is no evidence that the disease is established in the UK.
Pepino mosaic potexvirus has been intercepted from the Netherlands and Spain (including Canary islands), 36 times in 2000, 37 in 2001, and 2 in 2002.
EPPO Secretariat, 2002-06.