Research clearly shows that as we move into autumn and temperatures drop and rainfall increases, Psa-V inoculum levels start to rise.
With the upcoming harvest we will also see a big increase in movement of people and machinery between orchards.
Growers and contractors are reminded to make sure good orchard hygiene practices are in place; not just to reduce the risk of spreading Psa-V through machinery, tools, people and vehicles, but also to reduce the risk of spreading streptomycin-resistant and copper-tolerant/resistant Psa-V that may be present but undetected.
As previously reported, streptomycin resistance and copper tolerance has been found on a small number of orchards but may well be present on other orchards. Where it has been identified, orchards are being managed to ensure best practice is being carried out. This includes heightened hygiene measures, particularly during harvest, to reduce the spread to other orchards.
Best practice hygiene
Click here for KVH Best Practice: Orchard Hygiene
Last week KVH helped host a group of Chinese technicians from the Shaanxi Haisheng Fresh Fruit Juice Co – the world′s largest fruit and vegetable juice concentrate manufacturer.
The group were here on a Zespri-hosted tour to learn about the New Zealand kiwifruit industry and spent a day with KVH learning about Psa-V and other industry biosecurity risks.
KVH staff visited orchards in the Wanganui region this week to review recovery from the spring floods and severe Psa-V following a very wet and cold spring.
It is testament to the determination and strength of the growers that following their hard work in removing silt, two of the flooded orchards visited have successfully set a crop on large parts of the orchards.
Some plant deaths have occurred in the areas that suffered water logging for extended periods. Psa-V spotting has been more severe, largely due to an inability to access the orchards with sprayers. However, both orchards were able to successfully pollinate large areas. The hot, dry summer in the region has ensured the remaining silt has dried out and the Psa-V presence has reduced. One of the flooded orchards is being removed and a second flooded orchard that has been largely abandoned is likely to be removed.
Severe Psa-V that was evident in males in some Hayward orchards in spring has impacted on pollination. While this was partly offset with artificial pollination, there has still been the need to remove volumes of poorly-pollinated fruit. One additional Hayward orchard was identified with Psa-V in spring. However, the impact has been minimal to date with a good crop set and only mild leaf spotting.
A Gold3 orchard with established Psa-V in one block, has seen the need for ongoing removal of around 5-7 % canopy. Other Gold3 blocks in the same orchard remain relatively clear. A first year fruiting canopy under a plastic cover in the same orchard is showing no signs of Psa-V and is carrying an excellent first year crop after achieving full canopy.
The KVH team presented autumn Psa-V messages at a grower meeting reminding growers that a more proactive Psa-V management programme in autumn can lead to reduced symptoms in spring.
The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) has tightened biosecurity screening on incoming passengers from Australia due to a recent outbreak of Mediterranean fruit fly in Adelaide.
Arriving passengers may be greeted by detector dogs as soon as they step off the plane under the strict new measures.
The use of dogs at the arrival gate allows greater scrutiny of hand luggage – the most likely source of fruit and other risk items that could harbour fruit fly. In the past, passengers would not have come across a biosecurity detector dog until they had passed through customs.
A quarantine zone has been imposed in Adelaide following the discovery of the Med-fly in locally-grown peaches.
In February MPI provided KVH and other GIA signatories with updated BMSB interception data. This interception data shows that the risk profile of this pest is changing.
Interceptions from the USA have decreased, which may indicate that measures introduced by MPI and their US counterparts are successfully reducing the risk of entry through this pathway. However, interceptions from Europe are increasing.
BMSB was first detected in Europe in 2007. It is now established in nine European countries and is likely in the early stages of a population explosion similar to what we have seen in the USA. This population growth and range expansion is reflected in the interception data with a clear spike in interceptions from Italy.
MPI’s readiness approach utilises a ‘BMSB network’ which includes industry organisations such as KVH. KVH’s involvement in these activities includes the following.
Response framework under GIA
Research efforts to mitigate risk and impact of BMSB
Communications to increase likelihood of early detection
Advocating for tighter measures to reduce the likelihood of entry
Click here for more information on the BMSB.
KVH and the Bay of Plenty Regional Council have recently received complaints about moth plant (Araujia hortorum), a fast-growing, invasive climbing weed (pictured right). It is not too late to control moth plant. Removing vines and seed pods from shelter belts now will prevent further infestations next year. Moth plant harbours passion vine hopper, slows down orchard shelter trimmers and is a poisonous plant. Find out more about moth plant here.
A $3000 fine imposed on an Australian yachtie who intentionally brought fruit, vegetables and meat into New Zealand is not enough to act as a deterrent: this is the opinion of Horticulture NZ and one KVH supports.
Australian woman, Dianne Young, hid the food in her vessel instead of declaring it to a quarantine officer at Opua in the Bay of Islands in 2014.
An MPI quarantine officer searching the vessel after its arrival from Fiji found eggs, oranges, apples, tomatoes, pumpkin, pineapple, onions, kumara, ginger, garlic, spring onions, meat patties, ham, eggplant, bok choy, cabbage, cucumber, capsicum and lettuce.
All these items are considered ‘risk goods’ and could harbour pests such as fruit flies – putting New Zealand’s primary industries at enormous risk.
While this discovery and seizure of fruit demonstrates MPI’s biosecurity system is robust and working well, KVH agrees the subsequent punishment by the courts should be more severe to send a much stronger message to those who intentionally break the rules.