Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


PSA Is Still a Ticking Time Bomb

PSA Is Still a Ticking Time Bomb

PSA is an ongoing threat to the viability of the kiwifruit industry, and could flare up again as the disease evolves and becomes immune to current pest management practices, said Kiwifruit Claim Chairman John Cameron.

“What many don’t realise, is that this thing could well decimated us again. We still have PSA on our vines. Once PSA arrived here, no one was ever going to be able to completely get rid of it.”

The PSA outbreak decimated the kiwifruit industry in 2010 when it came to New Zealand – causing significant losses and devastating the lives of many kiwifruit growers.

Te Puke orchard owner, Bob Burt says Psa is like a ticking time bomb, and that in addition to the significant costs of pest management, growers are experiencing much lower production levels in their crops.

“PSA has not and never will be eradicated. Resistance to primary control chemicals is growing and I believe the likelihood of further Psa outbreaks is high.”

“I constantly live with the fear that Psa will come back and devastate the orchard again, it is a frightening disease. As growers, we do everything possible to ensure that our vines are in the best possible health so that they can resist PSA, but because of the characteristics of PSA-V, it could very easily genetically mutate and what we are currently using as pest management practices won’t be effective at all.

He says “this deadly disease has the potential to destroy, once again. While over the last few years, symptoms have (at great cost) largely remained under control during mild weather conditions, PSA continues to cause significant losses for many growers.

“The country may never fully know what the real impact of PSA has been or will be in the future.”

“In 2010, when it first hit, many growers were completely wiped out – faced with no crops and plummeting values on their orchards, they lost their businesses and were forced to sell at heavily discounted prices, others survived but suffered loss of income for many years and took on huge debts to replant.

“Now, seven years later those growers that have survived still deal with Psa in their orchards each season. They not only have significant costs in protecting their orchards against the disease, but fruit harvest is often reduced due to PSA affected fruit.”

“This year alone, on our orchard we have produced 5,000 less green kiwifruit trays per hectare - around 40% less fruit, simply because PSA disease is on the vines. When you combine this with the ongoing expenses of managing the disease – it makes you wonder how much its really costing our country.

“There’s a lot of commentary around how the industry has fully recovered from the effects of PSA – but how can we ever fully recover when PSA is still here and is a constant threat to our livelihoods?”

“Kiwifruit, like other primary industries, has its challenges but overcoming PSA is proving to be a much bigger challenge than anyone ever anticipated. This was a known pest and it should never have been allowed into New Zealand.

The Kiwifruit Claim represents 212 kiwifruit growers who are holding the Government and MPI to account for the significant losses suffered by growers from the PSA incursion. The High Court trial is currently being held in Wellington. MPI denies all the claims, but the Kiwifruit Claimants say the negligence is obvious.”


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Dairy NZ: ‘More Milk From Fewer Cows’ Trend Continues In A Record Year
Vodafone says it has 10,000 customers using its Wi-Fi Calling service. It took less than three months to reach that milestone; the service began operating in September... More>>

Statistics: Consents Remain At Record Levels
There were 47,715 new homes consented in the year ended October 2021, up 26 percent compared with the year ended October 2020, Stats NZ said today. "The year ended October 2021 marks another record for the annual number of new homes consented,” construction statistics manager Michael Heslop said... More>>

Foodstuffs: New World & Four Square Trial NZ’s First Grocery Delivery Offer With Uber Eats

New World & Four Square have partnered with Uber Eats to unlock the first grocery offering available on the platform in Aotearoa. For New World and Four Square it’s yet another way to put New Zealanders first, particularly with those inevitable last-minute grocery needs... More>>

Canterbury Museum: New Research - Bald Haast's Eagle Feasted On Moa Guts

New Zealand’s extinct Haast’s Eagle (Hieraaetus moorei), the largest known eagle, gulped down viscera like a vulture and may even have been bald, new research suggests... More>>

ABC Business Sales: Demand High For Covid-proof Businesses
Despite the continuing challenges facing businesses in this Covid environment, right now there are more buyers looking for a small-medium sized business than there are sellers in the market... More>>

PriceSpy: Producer Prices Increase
New Black Friday and Covid-19 Report* released by PriceSpy says people’s fear of stepping inside physical shops during big sales events like Black Friday has risen since last year; Kiwis are still planning to shop, but more than ever will do it online this year... More>>

NZ Skeptics Society: Announce Their 2021 Awards, And Dr Simon Thornley Wins The Bent Spoon

Every year the New Zealand Skeptics presents its awards to people and organisations who have impressed us or dismayed us, and this year it’s been hard to pick our winners because there have been so many choices!.. More>>