The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is considering proposed rule changes involving wood packaging material used in domestic commerce, such as crates, pallets and sticks. Nurseries commonly use pallets and sticks when shipping plant material, but such wood material unwittingly could transport unwanted and dangerous hitchhikers, such as the emerald ash borer and the Asian longhorned beetle. These invasive pests are already a threat in some parts of the country, and officials are trying to stop their spread. Comments on this topic will be accepted until Oct. 26, 2009. Those commenting should refer to APHIS docket no. 2009-0016. You can comment online at www.regulations.gov. For details, contact Mitchell Nelson, Oregon plant health director, at 503-326-2814 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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