Saudi Arabia bans imports of Egyptian strawberries over high pesticide levels
Saudi Arabia issued on Thursday a temporarily ban on imports of Egyptian strawberries over concerns of high levels of pesticides, El Watan reports. The ban, effective from 11 July, follows an inspection of a strawberry shipment from April. The Saudi ban prompted Egypt’s Agriculture Export Council to ratify yesterday new rules on pesticides it wants members to implement during the upcoming growing season, Al Borsa reports. Strawberry and pepper imports will both be under the microscope, council head Abdel Hamid El Demerdash said. The Agriculture Ministry had previously moved to impose stricter regulations on exports to the GCC after several countries banned Egyptian produce due to high pesticide levels. Saudi Arabia banned Egyptian peppers in December, prompting the UAE and Kuwait to follow suit.