Plant Production Biosecurity Scheme design underway

3 May 2018

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Experience early in the myrtle rust response underscored the crucial role that plant producers play in early detection and slowing the spread following a pest incursion. Subsequent discussions identified the opportunity to develop a systematic approach to plant production industry biosecurity risk management. Late in 2017, and under the auspices of the myrtle rust response, MPI contracted NZPPI to design a Plant Production Biosecurity Scheme (PPBS).

The proposed Scheme is intended to increase the awareness among plant producers of the risks that exotic and endemic pests pose to their nursery, and grow producers’ adoption of good biosecurity practice to help manage the risk of pest and disease spread. By protecting their nurseries, they also protect customers, the environment and the New Zealand economy.

The Scheme is a step change in producer and industry biosecurity readiness and capability. It will build and broaden industry biosecurity engagement and harness the critical skills and observations that exist in the plant production industry to strengthen biosecurity - and the crucial biosecurity team of 4.7 million New Zealanders. The development of this scheme, and the collaboration among producers, MPI and other plant-based sectors, is a strong illustration of this partnership progressing shared biosecurity interests, further and strongly illustrated through MPI funding for the project.

Work on the Scheme design and proposal is well underway. To date, it is focused on biosecurity hazards that impact a wide range of producers and nursery types and how we can work together to improve nursery and industry biosecurity risk management. The NZPPI team working on this project is gathering data on:

  • biosecurity hazards;
  • the ways in which nurseries can prepare to prevent being impacted by these hazards; and
  • the ways in which hazards can be managed, or the impacts minimised, should a nursery be infested.

We’re under “increasing pressure from terrestrial and aquatic pests, weeds and diseases that threaten the country's ecosystems and economy”. So said a 2015 research paper – read more about this and our work on the Biosecurity Scheme here.

PPBS industry consultation and meetings

NZPPI expects to have proposals ready for industry consultation and feedback late in May.

In June, we’ll host several meetings for industry members to gather and provide feedback so that the team can understand your thoughts about the proposed Scheme and collaborate with you to develop a common sense, workable solution. Please join us on:

  • 11 June – Christchurch, Antarctic Centre
  • 13 June – Auckland, Quality Hotel Lincoln Green
  • 14 June – Tauranga, Hotel Armitage
  • 19 June – Dunedin, Airport Conference Centre
  • 20 June – Nelson, Grand Mercure Monaco Resort
  • 21 June – Palmerston North, Awapuni Function Centre

All meetings run from 11am to 3pm and include a light lunch.
Please RSVP by 1 June to Frances Palmer,

We need your help to build a Scheme which works and is achievable; focuses on good generic biosecurity practice; reduces the risk of nurseries being infested by high-risk organisms and, in turn, spreading these through plant trade; and, ensures a plant producer is still able to safely grow and move plants around New Zealand.

Keep an eye on NZPPI’s website ( for further updates and contact Matt Dolan (027 622 9255, or John Liddle (021 370 168, for more information.

©2018 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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