NZ takes biosecurity seriously
August 10, 2015 11:28 pm
New Zealand’s Primary Industry Ministry says they take biosecurity seriously and managing risk from fruit flies is one of their most important areas of focus.
The Ministry says fruit flies could have serious consequences for New Zealand’s horticultural industry.
MPI NZ has been working with Fijian authorities to resolve an issue regarding export certification of consignments that have received heat treatment to manage risk from fruit flies present in Fiji.
MPI sets the minimum temperature and time requirements that fruit must be subjected to so that any fruit flies present are killed.
MPI relies on the Biosecurity Authority of Fiji to monitor and evaluate the outcome of the biosecurity treatment.
It says BAF should only issue a phytosanitary certificate when these requirements have been met.
However the Ministry says this has not occurred in some cases and has affected MPI’s confidence in phytosanitary certification from Fiji.
The Ministry has for this reason recently temporarily suspended the heat treatment pathway for Fijian fresh produce imports until the certification issue is resolved.
A senior NZ MPI official is visiting Fiji this week to facilitate progress.
It says fortunately, no fruit flies have been detected in New Zealand on consignments of fresh produce exported from Fiji.