11 Jul 2014

Kiwifruit restrictions causing strife

9:03 am on 11 July 2014

Some kiwifruit growers and nursery owners are unhappy about aspects of strict new movement controls which have been introduced to try to control bacterial disease PSA.

The organisation charged with controlling PSA, Kiwifruit Vine Health (KVH), has introduced movement controls for kiwifruit plant material from nurseries in an effort to stop its spread.

The managing director of Northland's Ohaeawai Nursery, Graham Milne, said while he absolutely supports the biosecurity efforts, he believed the movement control zones need to be tweaked.

Mr Milne's nursery was PSA free but had been included in the Kerikeri containment zone, and that stopped him from sending healthy plants to growers in Whangarei.

"It means that plants from our nursery in Ohaeawai can't be sent into Whangarei even though we don't have PSA and we've got high health - it's because we're in a containment zone and the risk is perceived to be, by bureaucrats, to be higher out of Ohaeawai," Mr Milne said.

"Now there are other places around the country who would have similar arguments, and we need to get KVH to understand and start working on that."