Vulnerability assessment of new jersey’s food supply to invasive species: The New Jersey import project

Petros Gregory, George Hamilton, Marija Borjan, Mark Robson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The United States’ environment and economy have been severely impacted by unintentionally introduced biological organisms for the last 100 years. Our ecosystems and biological reserves of conservation importance are regularly invaded by non-indigenous species. To help prevent future invaders from entering the ports, this project undertaken at the Port of Elizabeth proposed to: 1. Catalog the different vegetable and fruit crops entering this country; 2. Evaluate the potential risk to New Jersey crops that an introduced exotic pest might pose; and 3. Evaluate the potential that imported crops entering the U.S. have for harboring exotic pests. The New Jersey IMPORT report, or Invasive Management Promoting Open and Responsible Trade project [1], details a newly designed ecological risk assessment tool to evaluate entry potential of invasive pests at the Port of Elizabeth. Risk designations were assigned to shipments of four fruits; seven vegetables; and two field/forage crops based on: i) Country of origin; ii) Amounts of commodities imported; and iii) Endemic pests present in exporting countries. Between 5,000 and 180,000 tons of crops were imported into the Port of Elizabeth from October2001 to 2003. Pest risk analyses were drafted for twenty-five intercepted insects taken from the Port Information Network. In addition, eighteen pest risk analyses were drafted for invasive fungi, bacteria, and viruses of global concern as alerted by ProMed Digest. It was concluded that three crops imported remain at high risk: apples, peppers, and tomatoes. Peaches, soybeans, lettuce, sweet corn, potatoes, squash, and eggplant imported were considered moderate risk. Blueberries, cranberries, and alfalfa were considered low risk.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)289-299
Number of pages11
JournalNew Solutions
Issue number3
StatePublished - Nov 1 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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