Newsletter #2 2019

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In this issue

  • Meeting with Minister O'Connor
  • Welcome to new members
  • PPBS update
  • New Myrtle Rust portal
  • Plant Variety Rights review
  • Plant Trolleys
  • Member survey

March meeting with Minister O'Connor

Following the excellent meetings with senior government officials mid-February, Andrew Harrison, Mike Simpson and Geoff Thorpe, met with Minister for Agriculture Damien O’Connor last Wednesday in Wellington.

The NZPPI representatives described the sector to him and highlighted its value to the economy. Evidently, he was aware of much of this already.

The discussion moved to the value of new genetics for plant industries to ensure New Zealand’s market position overseas and then to the need for reform in the plant imports system.

The Minister indicated his department advises him they are working to address these issues and said if we hit any road blocks to let him know directly.

NZPPI has established a good relationship with the chief executive of the Ministry for Primary Industries, Ray Smith.

Mr O’Connor is interested in holding a further meeting onsite at a nursery (potentially with the Forestry Minister, Shane Jones) to consider progress and to see the industry in action. We will work with his office to arrange this.

The Minister has been invited to be a key-note speaker at our conference on 15-16 May.

Welcome to new members

The Board is delighted to welcome so many new members. Gaining new members is exciting for NZPPI as it builds its voice and momentum on key issues. Welcome to the team.

Plant Producer members:

Industry Partner members:

Plant Producers Biosecurity Scheme (PPBS) update

The PPBS is a biosecurity management scheme for the New Zealand nursery industry. It has been developed by MPI and the horticulture industry to improve plant hygiene practices in the sector.

The PPBS is for all nurseries across all sectors, big and small, not-for-profit and commercial.

The scheme applies to any type of nursery. That’s why the initial research part of the work took some time to complete. The sector is diverse and complex so bringing everyone on board and getting the foundations in place has been a significant task.

The draft standard has been written and is now ready to trial in nurseries. Pilot audits are intended in 10 nurseries. The pilot includes a general hygiene standard for all nurseries and species, plus add on modules for myrtle rust and kauri dieback.

Pilot nursery and biosecurity micro-credential workshops began in late February drawing 33 delegates from nurseries. The pilot and audit process were introduced.

Best practice workstream activity begins this month.

As we get closer to launch date in August, you will start to see more information about the scheme. This is a collaborative project driven by MPI and NZPPI. But it has been supported by the horticulture and forestry sectors.

We would like to thank everyone that has been involved, including those of you that attended the workshops, participated in the working group and provided feedback.

New MPI Myrtle Rust web portal

This new portal launched last week is a public facing tool with education packs and training modules for schools and the wider public. The training was designed to help New Zealanders identify suspected myrtle rust infections in their backyards and reserves. The courses and supporting information can be found at, a site that provides guidance for people that are interested in learning more about myrtle rust in New Zealand.

The site’s content has been developed by Biosecurity New Zealand and the Department of Conservation. It is pleasing to see our pages being linked-to from it.

Plant Variety Rights Review

We are continuing our work on the PVR review. This is an important advocacy area for NZPPI in the coming year. Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment are seeking information from our sector about the ownership and use of PVRs. MBIE recognise that our sector is an important stakeholder in this review. Watch out for our survey coming to selected members soon.


Do you have Plant Trolleys in need of repair?

The Plant Trolley swap scheme is designed to efficiently move plants via truck between nurseries and retailers.

But the system only works well when all trolleys are in good working order, and when the receiver has enough trolleys to swap when plants are delivered.

The next few months are a good opportunity to check your trolleys for damaged parts.

Any trolley components requiring repair should be returned. In the North Island, this is to Transflora in Auckland, and in the South Island, to Headford Propagators in Waimate.

If you anticipate needing plant trolleys in the next few weeks, place your order now.

A minimum 10 working days is required to process an order before the trolleys can be delivered.

Information on how the system works plus an order form and price list is here, or contact Frances Palmer: ph 04 918 3511

NZPPI Annual Survey

Thank you all for completing the survey. It remains open until tomorrow morning.


©2019 NZPPI
New Zealand Plant Producers Incorporated
PO Box 3443, Wellington 6140
Level 5, 23 Waring Taylor Street, Wellington
P: 04 918 3511 | F: 04 499 9589
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