Parliament

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

 

Beware the black widow - Greens

Beware the black widow

Green Biosecurity Spokesperson Ian Ewen-Street today said New Zealanders should be on the lookout for poisonous spiders when handling Californian grapes after MAF agreed to allow both the grapes and the spiders back into New Zealand.

The import of Californian grapes was suspended in November 2001 after four live black widow spiders were found in New Zealand in three months.

In announcing the decision to resume the imports MAF Biosecurity Leader Christine Reed noted that 'We fully expect that new species, including exotic spiders, will still be detected in New Zealand from time to time'.

"The decision to allow the import of Californian grapes shows MAF is more concerned with trade than with protecting New Zealanders and our primary production," said Mr Ewen-Street.

"In announcing the decision to resume imports MAF are admitting more spiders will find their way here. They are putting this trade ahead of the very possible risks that New Zealanders could be bitten by these spiders or that they could become established here.

"I want to know what has changed since these imports were originally suspended - particularly in terms of the screening and fumigation process."

Mr Ewen-Street asked how many more live poisonous spiders would have to be found here before the trade was shut down for good.

"Our wine producers should also be very angry about this short-sighted decision. Californian vineyards have been decimated by the vine-killing Pierce's Disease. If this disease ever found its way here it could cripple our burgeoning wine industry.

"MAF's admission that they 'fully expect' to find spiders in these imports show how fanatical Government has become about trade. We are prepared to take unacceptable risks to both our people and our economy in order to keep our trading partners happy," said Mr Ewen-Street.

"Since we banned the shipment of Californian table grapes we have sourced grapes from elsewhere. This seems to have been completely satisfactory. Why can we not continue to do the same?"

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Peters/Ardern Triumph

There are a lot of good reasons to feel joyful about this outcome. It is what so many young voters – the best hope for the country’s future – wanted.

Far more important than the implications for the Economy Gods (is the dollar up or down?) the outcome will also mean many, many vulnerable New Zealanders will have a better life over the next three years at least.

Yet the desire for change was in the majority, across the country... More>>

ALSO:

.

 
 

Submissions Summary: The People's Commission On Public Media

This Summary is a preliminary report from the People’s Commission. It brings together views and aspirations of the hundreds of people who made submissions, attended public meetings, filled out the online survey and made speeches to our Panel. More>>

Housing Plans: Protest Over Ihumatao Development

Ihumatao in Mangere, next to the airport in Auckland, holds the archaeological remains of 1000 years of food production; from when Maori first landed in the area, through to early European settler agriculture and right up until today. More>>

ALSO:

Negotiations: What Does Winston Peters Want His Legacy To Be?

A lot of people in New Zealand seem to resent Winston Peters and the power that he appears to have. “Appears” being the operative word.. More>>

ALSO:

Contains Highly Colloquial Language: Your F**king Guide To Government Formation

The following message is in no way endorsed by the Electoral Commission. They are f**king done with this election. More>>

NZ Emissions Up 50% 1990-2013: Report Confirms CLimate Change Impacting NZ

New Zealand is seeing impacts of excess greenhouse gas emissions in our climate and oceans, according to the latest national report from the Ministry for the Environment and Stats NZ about the state of the atmosphere and climate. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>

ALSO:

Rorschach Restructuring: Inland Revenue Steps Back From Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election