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Keeping pests and diseases out wherever possible

Pork Industry Board says Biosecurity must focus on keeping pests and diseases out wherever possible

The New Zealand Pork Industry Board believes that the side effects of the Government’s aerial spraying programme adds further support to its position that effective biosecurity needs to focus on keeping pests and diseases out wherever possible.

“There’s a fundamental message to be learnt from the side effects of the painted apple moth spraying programme” says Sam McIvor, New Zealand Pork Industry Board CEO. “That is, keep pests and diseases out wherever possible. Unfortunately some pests will get through our border undetected, like the painted apple moth. But in other cases New Zealand can and should set standards to keep pests and diseases out. The pork industry is most concerned currently about a MAF proposal that would knowingly allow the introduction into New Zealand of the PRRS (porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome) virus in imported pig meat. This simply doesn’t make sense when New Zealand is one of the very few countries in the world which is free of this devastating pig disease which is recognized as the number one enemy of the pig industry worldwide.”

Sam McIvor says he hopes that the concern expressed in the independent review of MAF’s handling of the painted apple moth spraying programme reinforces to MAF how critical it is that MAF sets border standards to maintain New Zealand’s human, plant and animal health status. “Let’s make sure we minimise the need for costly, difficult and contentious eradication programmes”, he says.

ENDS

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