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Potatoes New Zealand joins government biosecurity initiative

Potatoes New Zealand joins government biosecurity initiative

Among those in attendance at the signing ceremony were Stuart Wright, Potatoes New Zealand Chair (left) and Hon Nathan Guy - Minister for Primary Industries (right).

December 12, 2016
Potatoes New Zealand Inc. (PNZ) has signed an agreement with Government to better protect the potato industry it represents in managing biosecurity.

The industry group became the 14th partner organisation to join the Government Industry Agreement (GIA) for Biosecurity Readiness and Response.

The Deed was signed by representatives from Potatoes New Zealand at a ceremony held on a potato farm in Koputaroa. Attendees included Potatoes New Zealand and Government representatives, the Hon Nathan Guy - Minister for Primary Industries and the GIA Secretariat.

The Deed was signed by representatives from Potatoes New Zealand at a ceremony held on a potato farm in Koputaroa

The value of the New Zealand potato industry is $814 million per annum. There are 169 registered potato growers in New Zealand, producing 479,000 metric tonnes of potatoes in 2015, from 10,700 hectares planted.

Like all other horticulture industries, the potato industry faces a number of biosecurity threats that could damage the industry. One at the forefront of people’s minds at the moment is Tomato Potato Psyllid (TPP).

Stuart Wright, PNZ Chair, said they gained widespread support for joining GIA after extensive consultation with members of the potato and wider agricultural industries.

Stuart Wright, Chair potatoes New Zealand:

“MPI [Ministry for Primary Industries] have really lifted their game in the biosecurity space, implementing a number of key initiatives to help with the early detection of pests and diseases.”

“Potatoes New Zealand considers it is important to play our part as potato farmers to help prepare for, and minimise the potential impact from biosecurity pests and disease.”
Chris Claridge, Chief Executive, Potatoes New Zealand:

“Biosecurity prevention and planning are essential to ensure the commercial wellbeing of the potato and wider horticulture industries. Potatoes are a much loved part of every New Zealander’s meals.”

“We need to protect potatoes from biosecurity pests and diseases to ensure future generations to come will continue to enjoy potatoes with their meals.”
GIA Secretariat Manager Steve Rich welcomed PNZ on behalf of the GIA partnership saying the new addition will further strengthens efforts to deliver better biosecurity outcomes.

Steve Rich, GIA Secretariat Manager:

“It’s great that PNZ have recognised the benefits of partnering with other industry groups and Government. PNZ represents one of the larger vegetable crops and is a significant addition to the partnership.”

“The thirteen other partners whole heartedly welcome PNZ to the GIA partnership. We look forward to working with them to jointly manage biosecurity readiness and response.”
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Potatoes New Zealand represents the interests of New Zealand's seed, table, and process potato growers.
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