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Labour weekend brings in Accord on garden weeds

19th October 2006

Labour weekend brings in Accord on garden weeds

The National Pest Plant Accord, launched by the Minister for Biosecurity Jim Anderton today, is a non-statutory agreement between the Nursery and Garden Industry Association, Regional Councils, the Department of Conservation and Biosecurity New Zealand.

"I would like to call this Accord we are launching in Miramar the Labour Day Biosecurity Accord. It is a happy coincidence that the Accord is being launched a couple of days before the long weekend when gardeners get serious – and go en masse to plant nurseries," Jim Anderton said. "New Zealanders are enthusiastic gardeners and this long weekend heralds a new burst of life in our gardens.

"Because biosecurity is acknowledged more and more often as a foundation stone of our community, we all have a responsibility to play our part in protecting and enhancing our physical environment. Branches of government and industry have now successfully come together with goodwill to protect our environment from weeds and the damage they cause to successful industries and New Zealand's economic viability.

"The Accord identifies the most serious weeds that currently exist in New Zealand, and how industry and government agencies will work together to prevent their sale, propagation and distribution. The industry now sits alongside government agencies as decision makers and it's jointly responsible for over-seeing and implementing the Accord.

"Regional Councils will now begin disseminating information about the Accord to garden centres and other points of sale, such as weekend markets and road side stalls. Over time, these outlets will no longer stock plants identified through the Accord as dangerous to our environment.

"It is a great example of diverse groups of people working together to protect the things that we all, as New Zealanders, hold dear. It is a great way to start Labour weekend," Jim Anderton said.

The Accord can be viewed on-line at www.biosecurity.govt.nz/nppa

ENDS

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