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31 October 2017
Biosecurity Week 2017 kicks off
31 October 2017
Pests and diseases from offshore can cause serious harm to New Zealand's unique environment and primary industries; and the Port of Tauranga is one of many potential gateways. Biosecurity Week...
Biosecurity Week 2017 kicks off
31 October 2017

Pests and diseases from offshore can cause serious harm to New Zealand's unique environment and primary industries; and the Port of Tauranga is one of many potential gateways.

Biosecurity Week activities highlight the importance of biosecurity and the role that everyone in the Bay of Plenty can play in managing unwanted biosecurity risks says Kiwifruit Vine Health Chief Executive Barry O’Neil.

“We’re looking forward to talking to people who work on and around the Port about biosecurity – it’s such an important issue and one that really does affect everyone.”

“People who own and work at local businesses remember what Psa has done to the kiwifruit industry. There are bugs and pests that we don’t want here in New Zealand because of the devastating effect they will have not only on kiwifruit, but on the whole of our horticulture industry and environment.”

“A good example is a particular type of bug we’re concerned about – it’s one of our most unwanted and called the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug. It’s a major nuisance that attacks fruit when it feeds and ruins it. It infests homes and in the USA we’ve seen it stop people from being able to sit outside their homes and have a simple BBQ”.

Port staff, transitional facilities, associated industries (such as transporters and other logistical operators), and biosecurity experts will be meeting at several events over the next six days to raise awareness and understanding of the importance of managing biosecurity risk.

Special guest Ruud 'The Bug Man' Kleinpaste will also be attending several industry and community school group presentations during the week to discuss the vital role of everyone who works and lives in and around the Port and local community in keeping unwanted pests and diseases out of New Zealand.

Throughout the week there will also be discussions with post-harvest facilities and transitional facilities to learn more about the frontline biosecurity systems they have in place.

Biosecurity Week is part of the biosecurity excellence partnership between Port of Tauranga, the Ministry for Primary Industries, Kiwifruit Vine Health, NZ Avocado, Dairy NZ, Forestry Owners Association, NZ Customs and Bay of Plenty Regional Council. 

The award-winning partnership aims to build a port community committed to biosecurity excellence, with an ambitious goal of no biosecurity incursions coming through the Port of Tauranga. It is a successful regional example of the Ministry for Primary Industries, local industries and regional government, partnering to build a biosecurity team of 4.7 million New Zealanders.  

It also benefits from strong engagement with the science community, including a formal partnership with the New Zealand’s Biological Heritage national science challenge and the B3 (Better Border Biosecurity) science collaboration. This has been boosted by a $1.95 million co-funded research project with B3 to trial new tools and technologies in the port environment, monitor biosecurity awareness amongst the local community, and measure the impacts of changes on biosecurity risk.

Port of Tauranga Chief Executive Mark Cairns said the week provides a good opportunity to strengthen the significance of biosecurity within the Port community.

“Effective biosecurity awareness is critical to us running a successful business and being able to continue to service the Bay of Plenty region. The various events we’re holding for our staff, contractors and local businesses who regularly interact with us and our facilities will give us the chance to show people what they should be looking out for and what to do if they find anything.”

“It’s an opportunity to demonstrate the good work that happens here at the Port, day in day out, to keep an eye out.”

“Our people are at the frontline – they’re the ones most likely to first notice an unwanted pest on cargo, vehicles or equipment moving off the port. By knowing what to look for and reporting unfamiliar insects or suspicious looking pests they help protect everyone’s livelihood and the future of the kiwifruit, avocado and forestry sectors.”

View the PDF of this press release as it was sent to media.

Biosecurity News
30 October 2017
Biosecurity: what does it mean and why should we care?
30 October 2017
As Tauranga celebrates its annual biosecurity week local residents can reasonably ask “what is biosecurity” and “why should I care about it?”. We’ve heard recently...
Biosecurity: what does it mean and why should we care?
30 October 2017

As Tauranga celebrates its annual biosecurity week local residents can reasonably ask “what is biosecurity” and “why should I care about it?”.

We’ve heard recently about myrtle rust incursions, diseases impacting Bluff oysters on Stewart Island, and a cattle infection in Canterbury. All costing the nation, and taxpayers a lot money. Is it worth it go to such efforts to control eradications, or should we be like many other countries and not go so far?

Most New Zealanders appreciate our unique position in the world. Our animals and forests, and indeed, even most of our marine life, evolved on its own for the last 80 million years. Our productive agriculture and forestry systems depend on exotic plants, which, for the most part thrive in New Zealand free from their native pests and pathogens left behind in their homelands. As a result, both our natural systems and our primary production systems are particularly vulnerable to invasions. Our natural vegetation and very special birdlife has proven to be extremely susceptible to attack by possums, rats and stoats, and also in the case of kauri to tiny microscopic organisms known as phytophthora - the same group of organisms that has decimated native forests on the west coast of Australia and that also caused the massively destructive potato blight in Ireland in the 19th century.

New Zealand needs an effective biosecurity system to survive. Even more today than in the past as numbers of tourists arriving skyrocket, trade continues to accelerate, and high threat organisms move closer to our shores. Biosecurity is much more than just stopping bugs at the border and killing them if they do get through. It’s actually about protecting New Zealand values. Certainly, we want to prevent nasty things getting in, but biosecurity is also about managing those pests that have established and are causing serious damage, like possums, stoats, and Psa bacteria on kiwifruit.

Our biosecurity system is world class and only Australia’s comes close in providing an effective, but not foolproof, barrier to pests and pathogens that could have a huge debilitating effect on our economy and lifestyle. As well as protecting our primary industries, farming, horticulture, forestry and aquaculture from unwanted pests that want to gobble up our plants and infect our animals, it is also very much about protecting our export trade, which in the case of dairy and meat would be impacted immediately if foot and mouth were to be discovered in New Zealand. Horticultural and forestry exports could be similarly affected, simply by the detection of high-risk organisms in key primary production areas, such as the Bay of Plenty. A worst-case scenario could, for example, shut down log exports overnight should a serious notifiable pathogen be found in the region, and that would mean thousands of workers at the port and in the forest industry laid off for months while trade negotiations and research to solutions took place.

But biosecurity is also about protecting our lifestyle from pests such as the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) that, in North America where it has established in the last 20 years, has a disgusting habit of invading homes just before winter and building up huge populations of stinky bugs that no one wants to share their houses with. Huge efforts also go into preventing potentially disease carrying mosquitoes from establishing in New Zealand, especially those that can carry malaria, dengue fever, Ross River virus or zika virus.

But we also need to pay close attention to what is happening in our oceans and freshwaters. These are under threat from dozens of invading species, some of which have established and have displaced natives, and others that are getting closer every year to gaining a foothold and causing immense damage to environments that kiwis love, but know relatively little about because they are for the most part invisible. Our marine and freshwater habitats are in serious danger, and much greater biosecurity effort is needed to protect them, something we can all help with.

This column is a contribution to Biosecurity Week 2017 by Bill Dyck from the New Zealand Forest Owners Association.

Biosecurity Week is part of the biosecurity excellence partnership between Port of Tauranga, the Ministry for Primary Industries, Kiwifruit Vine Health, NZ Avocado, Dairy NZ, Forestry Owners Association, NZ Customs and Bay of Plenty Regional Council.  The award-winning partnership aims to build a port community committed to biosecurity excellence.

Biosecurity News
30 October 2017
Biosecurity Week
30 October 2017
Biosecurity Week 2017 kicks off Monday 30 October. Pests and diseases from offshore can cause serious harm to New Zealand's unique environment and primary industries; and the Port of Tauranga is...
Biosecurity Week
30 October 2017

Biosecurity Week 2017 kicks off Monday 30 October.

Pests and diseases from offshore can cause serious harm to New Zealand's unique environment and primary industries; and the Port of Tauranga is one of many ways in which they can enter.

Port staff, transitional facilities, associated industries (such as transporters and other logistical operators), and biosecurity experts will be meeting at several events over the next six days to raise awareness and understanding of the importance of managing biosecurity risk.

Special guest Ruud 'The Bug Man' Kleinpaste will be attending special events during the week (with Port staff, kiwifruit and avocado industry groups, and local community/education groups) to discuss the vital role everyone who works and lives in and around the Port and local community has in keeping unwanted pests and diseases out of New Zealand.

Biosecurity Week is part of the biosecurity excellence partnership between Port of Tauranga, the Ministry for Primary Industries, Kiwifruit Vine Health, NZ Avocado, Dairy NZ, Forestry Owners Association, NZ Customs and Bay of Plenty Regional Council.  The award-winning partnership aims to build a port community committed to biosecurity excellence.

 

 

 

 

Biosecurity News
19 October 2017
Working with Maori to manage kiwifruit risks
19 October 2017
KVH Chairman Adrian Gault and Peter Mourits attended the Te Whanau a Apanui Growers meeting at Te Kaha last Thursday. KVH appreciated the opportunity to meet with the Maori Growers Forum and Adrian...
Working with Maori to manage kiwifruit risks
19 October 2017

KVH Chairman Adrian Gault and Peter Mourits attended the Te Whanau a Apanui Growers meeting at Te Kaha last Thursday.

KVH appreciated the opportunity to meet with the Maori Growers Forum and Adrian took the chance to provide an update on KVH’s mission and strategy, and talked about how KVH is working to prepare the industry for the next biosecurity incursion.

Peter presented an overview of major biosecurity threats, with a focus on fruit flies and the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB). He outlined the impacts that the BMSB is having on kiwifruit production in Italy and the potential threat of this bug to over 300 plant species here in New Zealand. He reminded growers that not only is BMSB a risk to horticulture, but to local community gardens too.

The potential role of the Samurai Wasp as a biocontrol agent for the BMSB was discussed, along with research that has been undertaken over the last two years by Dr John Charles where he has been studying any potential impact from the wasp on New Zealand native species (if it were to be introduced). It was pleasing to report the wasp is very host specific and will not impact other species.

KVH acknowledged the support of the Maori Grower Forum and thanked them for their submission on the Samurai Wasp to the Steering Group who are preparing an application for consideration by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for the introduction of the wasp in the event a BMSB population is found in New Zealand.

KVH looks forward to continuing dialogue with this forum and working collaboratively to protect Maori interests from biosecurity threats to the kiwifruit industry.

Biosecurity News
19 October 2017
Reminder to be on the lookout for myrtle rust
19 October 2017
Symptoms of myrtle rust are likely to be a lot more prevalent with warmer temperatures and summer looming. If you see it on plants on your orchard, property, or garden, don’t touch it. Take...
Reminder to be on the lookout for myrtle rust
19 October 2017

Symptoms of myrtle rust are likely to be a lot more prevalent with warmer temperatures and summer looming. If you see it on plants on your orchard, property, or garden, don’t touch it. Take a photo and call the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) on 0800 80 99 66.

Be on the lookout for brig yellow powdery eruptions on either or both sides of the leaf; brown/grey rust pustules (older spores) which appear on older lesions; and buckled or twisted leaves which may die off.

Good hygiene practices should always be followed to help manage biosecurity threats, particularly the KVH hygiene recommendations. The key point is that plant material, vehicles, people and equipment can carry pests and diseases. Restrict access to orchards and ensure visitors, harvest staff, and contractors know and follow your hygiene requirements.

Biosecurity News
19 October 2017
Field days highlight biosecurity
19 October 2017
KVH has been at the recent Zespri OPC spring field days talking to growers about on-orchard biosecurity and Psa management, particularly over the current high-risk spring and summer...
Field days highlight biosecurity
19 October 2017

KVH has been at the recent Zespri OPC spring field days talking to growers about on-orchard biosecurity and Psa management, particularly over the current high-risk spring and summer season.

Attendance at field day events has been strong, with many growers sharing their thoughts and learnings with peers in small group get togethers, which have worked well.

KVH has enjoyed detailed discussions with growers about biosecurity risks and the range of resources available on the KVH website including fact sheets and videos that demonstrate the impacts of unwanted pests. We were pleased to hear that many growers have already watched our Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) videos and are prompting others to do the same. The importance of immediately reporting unusual symptoms was also highlighted – the sooner we are alerted, the more we can do to help. Early detection is key to eradication.

Timely discussions were also had about Psa. We know from our talks with growers that the weather has been difficult and we expect to see more symptoms over the coming weeks. The key points from the field days are:

·         A few sites are reporting more incidence of Psa in blocks, particularly younger blocks and those on more difficult sites. Growers are being proactive in getting on sprays when possible.

·         Field days have highlighted the rapid development of canopy through the spring period, emphasising the need to continue with protective sprays to ensure new leaf area is protected.

·         For some Gold3 sites M91 males are showing Psa signs and infection is being cut out. Hayward sites historically hit with Psa are also reporting some infection in males, particularly if less tolerant varieties like Matua are still in the canopy.

·         The recommendation is to cut and remove infected material from the canopy to avoid wet and windy periods spreading inoculum through the canopy.

·         Some early Te Puke Hayward sites are reporting leaf spotting and flowerbud infection as vines come under load. The caution here is for growers to monitor to understand what is happening and get protection on as weather allows. Psa sprays should be in place prior to high-risk weather.

·         Some orchards have been identified with Psa this week for the first time – see the latest statistics on the KVH website. 

Read more about the importance of spring weather Psa protection.

Biosecurity News
19 October 2017
Spring weather Psa protection
19 October 2017
Wet spring conditions are ideal for Psa build up and infection of young tender growth. Over the last week and a half KVH has been at orchards and Zespri OPC spring field days seeing and recording...
Spring weather Psa protection
19 October 2017

Wet spring conditions are ideal for Psa build up and infection of young tender growth. Over the last week and a half KVH has been at orchards and Zespri OPC spring field days seeing and recording symptoms – view a Psa photo gallery on the KVH website.  

With the KVH Risk Model showing days of wet weather, this is a timely reminder that growers must maintain full spray cover over the season, particularly prior to, or directly after high-risk weather, on all varieties. Those with young plants and grafts (which are particularly vulnerable) need to take care that they are getting strong protection on, and have good coverage.

The online KVH Psa Risk Model can help with this and should be used to plan spray timings. The model is a weather-based tool that uses actual weather station data and weather forecast information to provide customised access to weather and disease interpretations.

There are several spray product options available. Be sure to meet all user guide requirements. If applying bactericides ensure there are no flowers present in the sward or on vines. KVH has produced a fact sheet covering spray products - including copper, bactericides (Kasumin), Actigard and CPPU for green varieties - and recommended timings for each. CPPU products may only be applied to Green varieties and may not be painted directly onto vines as this practice is not approved by ACVM.

Key points on the use of preflower girdles are also included in the fact sheet, including:

  • For green varieties (Hayward and Gold14) in high Psa risk areas apply a full trunk girdle 30 days before the first female flower opens. This will reduce sepal staining and Psa budrot, therefore improving fruit-set.
  • Only girdle in fine weather, check girdle depth, and sanitise tools between every vine.
  • Girdle older trunks rather than young scions.
  • Avoid girdling stressed vines.

Copies of the factsheet are available on the KVH website.

Biosecurity News
19 October 2017
Bug spotting at Disneyland
19 October 2017
They say Disneyland is home to all creatures great and small and late last week we had a report of a sighting of something quite a bit smaller than the usual. While on the monorail at the...
Bug spotting at Disneyland
19 October 2017

They say Disneyland is home to all creatures great and small and late last week we had a report of a sighting of something quite a bit smaller than the usual.

While on the monorail at the famous park, a Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) was seen and photographed by a vigilant New Zealand kiwifruit grower who snapped a photo of it and then, needless to say, double checked all the family belongings and bags before returning home.

This level of vigilance (especially while on holiday) is great to see - KVH congratulates the grower for being so aware of what the BMSB looks like, and for knowing what to do to ensure it didn’t travel back to New Zealand with him. This is an example of how easily one of these bugs could make its way here and what a difference each of one of us can make just by being aware, and taking a few simple steps.

Everyone in the kiwifruit industry has a responsibility to manage biosecurity risks when travelling. To assist, KVH has developed best practice for kiwifruit growers to help reduce biosecurity risk after being overseas (especially if also visiting an orchard or farm); and to explain what growers can expect at border control when arriving back in New Zealand.

Biosecurity News
19 October 2017
Ensuring a pest-free port this cruise season
19 October 2017
The summer cruise season is starting at the Port of Tauranga and KVH is speaking with tour drivers about the important role they have in ensuring unwanted pests don’t reach the local community...
Ensuring a pest-free port this cruise season
19 October 2017

The summer cruise season is starting at the Port of Tauranga and KVH is speaking with tour drivers about the important role they have in ensuring unwanted pests don’t reach the local community and kiwifruit orchards.

As part of upcoming Biosecurity Week 2017 activities, KVH will be meeting and speaking to all drivers at the Port when the next cruise ship is in, reminding them of what they can do to keep unwanted pests out – namely, making sure all visitors follow good biosecurity hygiene practices, knowing what pests to look out for, and reporting anything unusual that is found by passengers in their hand luggage and belongings while travelling on tour buses.

The key message is that pests from offshore, like the Queensland Fruit Fly and other fruit flies, can cause serious harm to local primary industries and New Zealand’s unique environment; and through the Port of Tauranga is one of the many ways in which they can enter.

All drivers and tour operators are provided with biosecurity and kiwifruit orchard hygiene requirement messages that can be used in onboard addresses. These reiterate any food or plant items that shouldn’t be inadvertently taken off the ship and need to be placed in local amnesty bins at the port or reported to Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) staff present on the day.

Importantly, specific messages about the damage a biosecurity incursion could do to the kiwifruit industry are also provided. Buses travelling to kiwifruit orchards instruct passengers that when they step off the bus on arrival they walk over a footwear sanitisation pad. Biosecurity messages are further reinforced during on-orchard talks.

The start of cruise season coincides with Biosecurity Week 2017, which starts Monday October 30 and involves KVH, MPI and the Port of Tauranga working together to increase awareness of biosecurity with those who work on and around the port. The award-winning initiative is in its third year and has the goal of ‘no biosecurity incursions coming through the port’. We’ll have more information about Biosecurity Week in the next Bulletin.

 

Grower News
19 October 2017
Your favourites in one place
19 October 2017
There’s an area of the website for growers that makes it easier and quicker to find useful information. Under the ‘Growers’ tab there is a section called ‘Grower...
Your favourites in one place
19 October 2017

There’s an area of the website for growers that makes it easier and quicker to find useful information.

Under the ‘Growers’ tab there is a section called ‘Grower resources’ where we list quick links to the most viewed and topical documents, videos and news items on the KVH site. Growers can go to this resource page instead of having to search across different website pages and sections to find items of interest.

The page is regularly updated to provide growers with current information.

Company Notices
5 October 2017
Meet the team - introducing Andrew Harrison
5 October 2017
Andrew Harrison joined KVH in 2012 as Biosecurity Programmes Manager. He leads a small team with particular focus on the prevention side of biosecurity (things like global scanning for new risks...
Meet the team - introducing Andrew Harrison
5 October 2017

Andrew Harrison joined KVH in 2012 as Biosecurity Programmes Manager.

He leads a small team with particular focus on the prevention side of biosecurity (things like global scanning for new risks and influencing Government and others to prevent arrival of new threats), readiness and response to make sure we’re well prepared for any future biosecurity crisis, and on underpinning science and innovation.   


Andrew’s a biosecurity specialist. He previously worked in the biosecurity field for both the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) and Department of Conservation (DOC), where he’s led biosecurity readiness, response and pest management operations, as well as biosecurity strategy, policy and law reform in various senior management and technical roles.

With KVH, a recent focus for Andrew was leading a BMSB exercise, which brought industry leaders and specialist advisers together to test how prepared we are for one of the biggest threats to the kiwifruit industry today, the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB). Development of our industry’s new BMSB Readiness Plan was tested during that exercise – a joint KVH/Zespri project and effort which Andrew led.

A key focus for Andrew in the near future is taking the Biosecurity Excellence at Port of Tauranga partnership to the next level. This includes preparing for this year’s Biosecurity Week (30 Oct – 3 Nov), working with researchers from Better Border Biosecurity to commence the new research programme recently approved by government to support developing biosecurity excellence at the Port, and rolling this approach out across other marine and air ports around New Zealand.

Andrew works on contract for KVH. He’s also the Chairman of New Zealand Plant Producers Incorporated (NZPPI), and a biosecurity consultant assisting Government and other industries with their biosecurity challenges.


Andrew’s a keen grower – with a small HW block in Te Puna he’s improving and converting to organic green. Outside of work his main passions are his young family, fishing, hunting and gardening.

 

Biosecurity News
5 October 2017
Keep an eye and ear out for the red-vented bulbul
5 October 2017
Spring has arrived and it’s the perfect time of year to identify any red-vented bulbul birds which may have flown into your area. This invasive, small bird is an unwanted pest that has...
Keep an eye and ear out for the red-vented bulbul
5 October 2017

Spring has arrived and it’s the perfect time of year to identify any red-vented bulbul birds which may have flown into your area.

This invasive, small bird is an unwanted pest that has fortunately not yet established in New Zealand, but has been occasionally detected. Over the last two years a few birds have been found in Auckland and a single bird has been found in Te Puke.

It’s known to cause considerable damage to fruit and vegetable crops and is a potential pest to kiwifruit. It also attacks other birds.

Identifiable characteristics of the red-vented bulbul:
- Small to medium sized (larger than a sparrow, but smaller than a blackbird)
- Around 20cm in length
- Dark brown/black in colour with a light coloured belly and the distinctive crimson-red patch beneath the tail
- Black head with a small peaked crest
- Makes repetitive and distinct calls.

The red-vented bulbul is native to Pakistan and parts of China, and has established in several Pacific Islands. Evidence suggests they may spread to new land masses onboard sea vessels.

Read the latest fact sheet  to learn more or visit the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) website to listen to the red-vented bulbul’s distinctive call.

If you think you have seen or heard this bird, or any other unusual pest or disease, contact the MPI exotic pest and disease hotline on 0800 80 99 66.

 

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Kiwifruit Vine Health

Suite 3, Level 1, Customhouse Building
314 Maunganui Road, Mount Maunganui
(entrance cnr Totara and Rata Street)
PO Box 4246, Mount Maunganui, 3149
New Zealand

Tel:  0800 665 825
Fax: 07 574 7591

Email: info@kvh.org.nz