TOKYO, Aug. 31 – EU will lift the import ban on Japanese black pine bonsai miniature potted plants on October 1, 2020, with some conditions. According to Japan’s farm ministry, the plants must be grown and kept in places registered by Japanese plant protection agencies for two years before the export. Bonsai from Japan is quite popular in Europe, and the import ban lifting may lead to market expansion.
EU has been prohibiting the import of black pine bonsai to stop the entry of pests and diseases. However, in March 2016, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries of Japan requested the European Commission to lift the ban, based on the request of bonsai growers in Japan. After repeated discussions, the commission agreed to accept the bonsai from Japan conditionally.
Bonsai exporters must ensure proper cultivation management and have their products tested before the export to make sure that the plants are pest-free and disease-free and meet all the EU requirements.
The EU will accept the bonsai of goyo matsu (five-needle pines) only. “We hope that the start of black pine bonsai export will lead to an increase in demand for Japanese bonsai in the EU countries,” the ministry official said.