County employee inspects a vegetable cooler.
A County employee inspects a shipment of broccoli bound for Taiwan.

Local agricultural producers throughout San Luis Obispo County routinely provide healthy and abundant agricultural products, which are enjoyed not only by San Luis Obispo County residents but also by consumers around the nation and the world. In 2016, nursery plants, vegetables, seeds, and cut flowers grown in the county were in high demand on a global scale.

By inspecting outgoing shipments, County employees helped growers certify agricultural products that were exported to places around the world. Conversely, certain plant shipments of foreign origin arriving into San Luis Obispo County were also routinely inspected by County staff. These inspections protect our local agriculture and environment from the inadvertent introduction of harmful insects and plant diseases that may hitchhike in shipments.

In fiscal year 2015-16, County Department of Agriculture/Weights and Measures issued 3,453 export certificates for shipments sent to 48 foreign countries and 156 certificates for shipments sent throughout the United States. Shippers are required to obtain export certificates that attest shipments meet pest cleanliness standards set forth by the importing state or country. This ensures that insect pests or plant diseases of concern to the receivers are not inadvertently sent with the shipments.

Routine inspections by staff make it possible for residents in countries such as Taiwan, Japan, Canada, Mexico, and many other destinations to enjoy the fruits of the labor of San Luis Obispo County’s farmers and the bountiful broccoli, head lettuce, Brussels sprouts, bell peppers, cauliflower, kale and many other commodities they produce.

By the numbers

 3,453 certificates issued for foreign bound shipments

  48 foreign countries received certified shipments

  156 certificated issued for domestic – USA bound shipments

  14 states received certified shipments

  Top 4 shipment destination countries

1. Canada

2. Japan

3. Taiwan

4. Mexico

  Top 3 shipment destination in USA:

1. Hawaii

2. Texas

3. Puerto Rico