Mr. COMBEST. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
Mr. Speaker, the Export Apple Act replaces the Export Apple and Pear Act, which was enacted on June 10, 1933. Currently, this 66-year-old legislation requires that apples and pears meet certain standards prior to export in order to ensure only high-quality U.S. fruit moves into foreign commerce.
H.R. 609 amends the 1933 act by removing pears from the language, and it will be permitting the means to increase the export of pears.
H.R. 609, which is sponsored by the gentleman from Oregon (Mr. WALDEN) removes pears from the act, thereby allowing U.S. exporters greater flexibility in the changing international marketplace and the opportunity to increase exports by gaining a foothold in emerging markets.
The USDA has advised the committee that mandatory Federal quality [Page: H846]
standards for pears are no longer needed to assure the high quality of exporting pears. The USDA supports enactment of H.R. 609. As world economies improve and areas of trade continue to decrease, new market opportunities for fresh pears arise. In order to provide the flexibility to meet the requirements of these new opportunities, H.R. 609 should be passed, and I would urge that my colleagues
support this legislation.
Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.