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Kiwifruit's most unwanted

Kiwifruit's most unwanted

There are eight organisms identified as the biggest biosecurity threat to New Zealand's kiwifruit industry.

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 Kiwifruit's most unwanted

Kiwifruit's most unwanted

Ceratocystis fimbriata

Ceratocystis fimbriata is a soil-borne fungal pathogen that is causing significant damage to kiwifruit orchards in Brazil.

The first reports of a wilt disease in kiwifruit in Brazil appeared in 2010. In the following years, significant vine losses occurred, with some orchards losing 20 - 40% of vines. Over the last five years, some growers have reported 50% vine loss.

There are no efficacious control options available, and once the soil is contaminated, the replanting or re-grafting of new kiwifruit is not sustainable as the new vine will become infected. This pathogen is considered a serious biosecurity threat.

Threat Levels
Likelihood of entry
Likelihood of establishment
Production impacts
Market access impacts
Very Low

Pest ranking based on the KVH risk matrix

View risk matrix

KVH and Zespri are funding a number of research programmes to better understand this pathogen and reduce the likelihood and consequence of impacts to the New Zealand industry.

Read a report following a visit to Brazil to investigate Ceratocystis fimbriata.

Read about pathogenicity screening of isolates on kiwifruit cultivars.

Research proposals are currently being considered to sequence a number of Ceratocystis strains, including the kiwifruit and sweet potato strains. This will significantly advance our knowledge of the pathogen and enable primers to be developed for rapid and accurate detection.

Further Ceratocystis fimbriata resources


KVH investigates reports of unusual symptoms to identify and manage any biosecurity risks.

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18 Jul 2024

Are you a quizmaster like our young growers?

Annual Young Grower competitions have been taking place throughout the regions over the last few weeks and we’ve had biosecurity rounds included in many of them. Congratulations to everyone who took part – it’s great to see such knowledge and enthusiasm for the importance of biosecurity. Just yesterday at the Bay of Plenty Young Grower event we provided an interactive quiz to each of the competitors, who impressed us with their on-orchard biosecurity expertise. Congratulations to Jack Canham from Apata for winning the biosecurity section on the day. How do you compare to this year’s young growers? Think you’d outdo them? Test yourself on the Connections game here (where you will need to group words that have a common thread, into four groups of four) before seeing the set of quiz questions we asked competitors here. Answers for the quiz questions can be found here. Good luck!

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16 Jul 2024

Mature plant movements

Winter is the time when growers look to replace plants on their orchards or plant new blocks. This article is a reminder that if these plants are being moved between properties there are biosecurity requirements that must be met to reduce the likelihood of spreading pests and diseases, including Psa. These requirements also provide the best chance of a successful response if a new organism was detected in our industry. While most kiwifruit plant movements come from nurseries, growers may occasionally move mature plants between orchards. The movement of any plants are a risk pathway, and it is important for growers to understand what’s required under the Pathway Plan, as outlined below. What does this mean for you? If you are taking mature plants from your own orchard for use on that same orchard there are no requirements under the Pathway Plan. If you are moving orchard plants from your orchard to another orchard, or source orchard plants from someone else, you need to ensure that you are meeting the requirements of the Pathway Plan – by being Kiwifruit Plant Certification Scheme (KPCS) certified for example. If you are a Psa non-detected supplier, you will need to complete a Psa test. It isn’t onerous to become certified as an orchard plant supplier and there are no costs (unless diagnostic testing is required). The new Pathway Plan requirements are very similar to existing protocols. They do require planning in advance to ensure monitoring can occur while vines have leaves and are in active growth. More information about orchard plant movement information, including the KPCS manual and supporting documents, is available here.

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15 Jul 2024

Upcoming AGM and voting packs

A reminder that our Annual General Meeting (AGM) is coming up and growers will receive their AGM packs by email at the end of this month. This is a public meeting and anyone who is interested is welcome to attend. Special guest Dr Jacqueline Rowarth will be joining us to speak about precision breeding, followed by the NZKGI and then Zespri annual meetings. Where: Mercury Baypark, Truman Lane, Mount MaunganuiWhen: Wednesday 21 August

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