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AU: Fijian ginger import review is a welcome step

Ausveg welcomes the Department of Agriculture bringing forward a review into import conditions for Fijian ginger after detection of live root knot nematode in a shipment of the product after trade commenced earlier this year.

“At the time of the detection AUSVEG and the Australian Ginger Growers Association voiced concerns that a live organism had made it through fumigation treatment and on to Australian shores. This raised some serious questions in relation to the Import Risk Analysis for Fijian ginger that was conducted by biosecurity staff in the Federal Department of Agriculture,” said AUSVEG spokesperson Andrew MacDonald.”
“AUSVEG is happy to see the Department bring forward the review and is eager to see the risks re-assessed.”

While the species of nematode found in the imported ginger is already found in Australia, according to the Australian ginger industry the Fijian pest of concern, a variant of burrowing nematode (Radopholus similis), is causing significant damage to ginger crops in that country.

“We are happy that the Department have realised the seriousness of the threat, and that a review has been brought forward. It is imperative that the Department of Agriculture heeds the warnings of industry groups, scientists and the Senate Committee, especially when any biosecurity breach could have serious and destructive impacts on the health and viability of Australian horticulture.”

For more information:
Andrew MacDonald
Tel: +61 (03) 9882 0277

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