US and Canada – Asian Gypsy Moth (AGM) – Reminder of requirements for vessels entering North America

27 August 2019 No.1034

In response to reports of high population levels of AGM in some countries regulated for AGM, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Canadian food Inspection Agency (CFIA) jointly published attached bulletin to remind vessel operators of requirements for entering U.S. and Canada safely.


According to the bulletin, it is highlighted that “possessing a valid certificate in no way precludes a ship from being ordered out of port if AGM detected.” It is also recommended that following measures should be taken to avoid any delays to port entry or refusal of entry in North America; 


  • Arrange for AGM inspection, removal of all AGM life forms and certification as close as possible to departure from areas regulated for AGM to avoid re-infestation
  • Ensure that all vessel activities in regulated areas (e.g. bunkering) are concluded or in the process of being concluded prior to obtaining AGM certification
  • Conduct vessel self-checking while en route to North America to remove and destroy all egg masses and other life forms of AGM detected
  • Ensure vessels are in good repair and decks are clear of debris and unnecessary obstacles to allow for thorough inspection both in AGM regulated areas and upon arrival in North America.


In this regard, we have obtained information that Japan have a large volume of AGM in the Inland sea this year following the previous year. In these areas of high population level of AGM flying to port, it is reported that the vessels, which had obtained the required pre-depature certificate after AGM inspection conducted on the day before departure from port, were exposed to AGM flying during the overnight hours and finally allowed moths to intrude and stay on board when departure next morning.


In addition, there is a case where the bulker vessel having called at Russia failed to enter port in Canada three times due to AGM detection and was prohibited from entering Canada for two months. Having obtained the approved certificate at the port, the vessel finally gained the permission to enter the port at the fourth examination.


Members calling at the AGM regulated Asian areas should be aware of the above and ensure vessel’s self-inspection as soon as possible after departure to be free from of AGM egg masses.Please refer to Japan P&I News No. 1014 regarding requirements set forth by U.S. and Canada in 2019 AGM flying season.


We wish you a pleasant voyage.