Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Greens call for ban after another Black Widow

14 September 2001

Greens call for ban again after another Black Widow

The biosecurity risks associated with importing Californian grapes are simply too high and the imports must be banned immediately said Green Biosecurity Spokesperson Ian Ewen-Street.

Mr Ewen-Street was commenting after the second live Black Widow spider in three weeks was found in a bag of Californian table grapes purchased from a Kaitaia supermarket.

"The Government beefed up the biosecurity rules for Californian grapes only two months ago, and already two live, poisonous black widows have slipped through. The new regulations have not worked and we now must ban these imports," he said.

Mr Ewen-Street said the luxury of having grapes out of season was not worth the risks to New Zealanders' health and to the nations wine industry. "What really concerns me is the thought that the glassy-winged sharp-shooter - a pest which has devastated the Californian wine industry - is much less likely to be spotted, and therefore much more likely to get established here. "As I said three weeks ago, if a black widow spider can get in, what's to stop a glassy-winged sharp-shooter getting in too? The implications for our wine industry if this happened could be devastating," he said. "I've seen first-hand bulldozers ripping up dead vines in California," said Mr Ewen-Street.

"The disease the Glassy Winged Sharpshooter spreads - Pierces Disease - is the grape equivalent of foot and mouth. We are taking a huge risk by allowing these grapes to continue pouring in here.

"We stringently banned all sheep and cattle products from our shores during the foot and mouth epidemic. Our wine industry is a valuable and growing part of our export market.

"Let's give it the same respect and protection that we give our farmers, and ban the import of Californian grapes and other fruit from California such as citrus and watermelons in which the Sharpshooter lays its eggs," said Mr Ewen-Street.

"We have already been shown in no uncertain terms that the biosecurity systems in place are not adequate. We are placing our wine industry and our economy at risk if we permit this to go on."

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Tax Working Group’s Road Map

Trying to analyse the interim report on the Tax Working Group (TWG) is like trying to review an entire All Blacks game, but at the half- time mark.

With so much still to be finalised, Sir Michael Cullen and his colleagues are going to need all the All Blacks’ fabled finishing skills to get a coherent, fiscally neutral package together by the February 2019 deadline. More>>

 

Meth Testing Report: Housing NZ "To Right Wrong"

Phil Twyford “Housing NZ acknowledges that around 800 tenants suffered by either losing their tenancies, losing their possessions, being suspended from the public housing waiting list, negative effects on their credit ratings or, in the worst cases, being made homeless.” More>>

ALSO:

No Reshuffle: Meka Whaitiri Removed As A Minister

Meka Whaitiri will be removed as a Minister with immediate effect... The decision was made after receiving a report into an incident that occurred on 27 August in Gisborne, involving Meka Whaitiri and one of her staff. More>>

ALSO:

Pay Equity Bill: Making History For Women’s Pay

The Equal Pay Amendment Bill, introduced to the House today, will make it easier for workers to make a pay equity claim , using a more simple and accessible process within New Zealand’s existing bargaining framework. More>>

ALSO:

Suffrage 125: NZ A Trailblazer For Women

“We acknowledge the work of Kate Sheppard, Meri Te Tai Mangakāhia, and all of the suffragists who tirelessly campaigned for the vote… Today we also need to ask each other: how we can continue to make our country a fairer and better place to continue the legacy of the suffragists.” More>>

ALSO:

Asylum: Refugee Quota Increasing To 1500

“The quota increase will take place from July 2020. In the meantime, we will work to increase the number and spread of refugee resettlement and support services. We need to make sure we’re prepared for this change in policy.” More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels