New limits on scald inhibitor DPA may hit apple availability, Barlow warns

Adrian Barlow - image: English Apples & Pears
Adrian Barlow - image: English Apples & Pears
Tougher EU minimum residue levels (MRLs) on DPA (diphenylamine), used as a scald inhibitor on apples, come into effect in March next year.

Though this will not directly impact British growers, who do not use the treatment, it may dent availability of apples more generally, English Apples & Pears chief executive Adrian Barlow warned.

"It won't affect European production except for emergency use. But over the coming years the Southern Hemisphere and US crops, though not New Zealand's, will be affected. Growers there have already said they may have to reconsider exporting to Europe, though they may produce some specifically without DPA for the export market."

Though this sounds like a boon for British and European growers, Barlow said: "I am concerned that there shouldn't be a shortage of product for consumers, such that they go to other products instead. It would then be difficult to get them back, just as UK production is going up."

Year-round supply of British apples remains an achievable goal by the end of the decade, he added.

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