Kiwi Disease circulates in NZ sine 2007

KiwiThe Ministry of Agriculture & Forestry (MAF) reveals that the bacteria type Psuedomonas syringae pv actinidiae (PSA), which caused the mass infection of numerous kiwi plants in New Zealand, has been inside the nation for three years already.

The lately imported pollen from Chile and China are not the source of the vine canker bacteria outbreak. David Yard, the response manager of the MAF expresses: "There is no current evidence to show that PSA in pollen can infect healthy kiwifruit vines. There is no firm evidence that artificial pollination is causing PSA disease."

Even before pollen has been imported to the country, tests were made that indicate the presence of PSA on kiwi plants in the Bay of Plenty and South Auckland have been positively tested already back in 2007 and 2009.

The number of diseased kiwi plantations amount to 51 and increased from 37 last Thursday.

Representatives of the kiwi industry have no decided to fight the bacteria aggressively using $25 million government funding. Money will further be invested in research on PSA and other plant diseases.

In future, MAF experts warn farmers to test imported pollen that they wish to use for their plantations according to PSA before pollinating.

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