The export of perishable products from South Africa to various world markets is governed by strict handling protocols. These protocols and their associated temperature regime codes are updated and published annually by the PPECB. These are based on extensive scientific research, conducted with industry bodies and experts in the field to ensure products reach the market in top quality. These, therefore, need to be adhered to by all entities intending to export perishable products out of South Africa.

However, there may be exceptional instances where a deviation from these stipulated handling protocols may be requested by either exporters, growers, or any other handler of the perishable product in question. This is done via a dispensation process, where the grower or exporter completes a formal application to the PPECB requesting this deviation. The party requesting a deviation from the normal protocol, completes a T13 dispensation application form which is submitted to the PPECB’s Research and Development team for processing. This request is carefully examined by the team, with inputs from industry experts where necessary. It is only after consensus is reached between the parties discussing the dispensation that a decision is reached to either grant to decline the request.

The one issue with deviating from the standard handling protocols is that the impact of the deviation on final fruit quality may be unknown. Therefore, dispensations are often granted under strict conditions that need to be adhered to by the applicant. Some of these include, the applicant taking full responsibility for product quality and giving feedback, to the PPECB, on product quality upon reaching the target market. Reporting back on the quality of the product is a very important part of the process as it gives insightful information to the organization. This in turn allows the PPECB to make an informed decision – should a similar request be submitted in future.

This communique serves as a gentle request to industry members to adhere to all the stipulated conditions for granting their dispensation requests. Particularly important to the PPECB is giving feedback on product quality on arrival in the market. The dispensation/R&D team will be making follow ups with some of the dispensation requests from the past season and looks forward to co-operation from all involved. For all correspondence regarding dispensations emails can be directed to