Pest categorisation of non‐EU viruses and viroids of Prunus L.

European Union, pest risk, plant health, plant pest, quarantine, peach virus, peach viroid, plum virus, plum viroid, apricot virus, apricot viroid, almond virus, almond viroid, cherry virus, cherry viroid, nectarine virus, nectarine viroid
First published in the EFSA Journal
30 septembre 2019
22 mai 2019
Scientific Opinion


Following a request from the EU Commission, the Panel on Plant Health addressed the pest categorisation of the viruses and viroids of Prunus L. determined as being either non‐EU or of undetermined standing in a previous EFSA opinion. These infectious agents belong to different genera and are heterogeneous in their biology. With the exclusion of Ilarvirus S1 and Ilarvirus S2, for which very limited information exists, the pest categorisation was completed for 26 viruses and 1 viroid having acknowledged identities and available detection methods. All these viruses are efficiently transmitted by vegetative plant propagation techniques, with plants for planting representing the major pathway for long‐distance dispersal and thus considered as the major pathway for entry. Depending on the virus, additional pathway(s) can also be Prunus seeds, pollen and/or vector(s). Most of the viruses categorised here are known to infect only one or few plant genera, but some of them have a wide host range, thus extending the possible entry pathways. Apple scar skin viroid, American plum line pattern virus, cherry mottle leaf virus, cherry rasp leaf virus, cherry rosette virus, cherry rusty mottle‐associated virus, cherry twisted leaf‐associated virus, peach enation virus, peach mosaic virus, peach rosette mosaic virus, tobacco ringspot virus and tomato ringspot virus meet all the criteria evaluated by EFSA to qualify as potential Union quarantine pests (QPs). With the exception of impact in the EU territory, on which the Panel was unable to conclude, apricot vein clearing virus, Asian prunus virus 1, Asian prunus virus 2, Asian prunus virus 3, Caucasus prunus virus, cherry virus B, Mume virus A, nectarine stem pitting‐associated virus, nectarine virus M, peach chlorotic mottle virus, peach leaf pitting‐associated virus, peach virus D, prunus virus F and prunus virus T satisfy all the other criteria to be considered as potential Union QPs. Prunus geminivirus A does not meet the criterion of having negative impact in the EU. For several viruses, especially those recently discovered, the categorisation is associated with high uncertainties mainly because of the absence of data on their biology, distribution and impact. Since this opinion addresses specifically the non‐EU viruses, in general these viruses do not meet the criteria assessed by EFSA to qualify as potential Union regulated non‐quarantine pests.

This publication is linked to the following EFSA Journal articles:,,,

Panel members at the time of adoption

Claude Bragard, Katharina Dehnen‐Schmutz, Francesco Di Serio, Paolo Gonthier, Marie‐Agnès Jacques, Josep Anton Jaques Miret, Anne Marie Fejer Justesen, Alan MacLeod, Christer Sven Magnusson, Panagiotis Milonas, Juan A. Navas‐Cortes, Stephen Parnell, Roel Potting, Philippe L. Reignault, Hans‐Hermann Thulke, Wopke Van der Werf, Antonio Vicent, Jonathan Yuen, Lucia Zappalà.
Panel on Plant Health
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EFSA Journal 2019;17(9):5735
Question Number
On request from
European Commission