Unusual symptoms

Seen something unusual? it's important you report it straight away. Click here to read about the ways you can report unusual pests or disease symptoms

When information about unusual symptoms is reported to KVH (by growers, contractors, pack-house staff and others visiting orchards) it is then looked into to be sure that any biosecurity risk is identified, managed and the growers involved are well supported if any further action needs to be taken.

KVH prepares full reports on every investigation which you can read about by clicking on the link below. This information is provided to help growers, and others in the kiwifruit industry, identify similar symptoms they may be seeing on their own properties and to increase general awareness of how growers need to be reporting unusual symptoms that they may be seeing.

Reporting the unusual is a good thing – it shows that as an industry we are all on the lookout and aware of the need to report potential biosecurity threats that could be significant risks to the industry.

Growers, contractors, and anyone else on-orchard are the best people to spot anything unusual early on. If it's a pest or bug you're reporting, catch it if you can and take a photo. If it's a disease symptom on a plant, tree, or vine, take some clear photos but try not to touch it. Remember, the sooner a report is made and looked into, the more we can do to slow the spread and limit impacts.

Stay vigilant, be on the lookout, and report anything you notice to KVH online; on 0800 665 825; or call the Biosecurity New Zealand pest and disease hotline 24/7 on 0800 80 99 66.

You can also make reports online by submitting images to Biosecurity New Zealand here or by using the free Find-A-Pest app here to help ID pests of concern.

The potential benefit to our industry of making a report cannot be overestimated, and the earlier something is reported the greater chance we have of eradicating it.

Although generic and only slightly different for each report and case, there is a process for what happens next that you can be assured of, and that will always include ongoing support and contact with KVH.

After reporting


Actions I can take to ensure smooth-running

Identification, assessment and response

The suspicious find is identified. In most instances it is found to not be of concern with no further action required, or not new to New Zealand and managed on-orchard.

If the organism is found to be new to New Zealand, Biosecurity New Zealand will undertake an investigation to determine risk of the organism and feasibility of undertaking action. Biosecurity New Zealand will contain the pest/pathogen to understand more about it and the impact it may have.

Biosecurity New Zealand, KVH and any other affected groups then work together to decide whether to formally respond and if so, set goals such as eradication or containment. Sometimes a response then moves into long-term management (as is the case with Psa currently).

Timeframes from notification to a response decision vary. For pests with serious impacts that we know a lot about (like fruit fly) it can be immediate, but for others the investigation may take weeks.

After reporting you need to be prepared to access and provide records and information when requested (traceability information of plant material movements on and off the property is critical for a successful response); follow directions to manage the pest/pathogen; respect confidentiality to avoid unnecessary market reaction.

Effect on OGR

Most reports of unusual symptoms turn out to not be a biosecurity threat and there are no implications for growers. However, if a response is activated and losses are incurred because of response activities, you will be eligible for compensation under the Biosecurity Act (subject to some conditions).

Losses must be verifiable, so good production and business records are essential for compensation claims. Make sure you note where your records can be found in your absence.

Who to talk to

KVH provides regular information advice about managing identified pests/pathogens and how a response is unfolding.

NZKGI provides advice and support information to growers.

Post-harvest operators help with operations and advice.

Ensure you have stored or noted phone numbers and contact details for KVH, NZKGI and your post-harvest operator, and make sure they can be found in your absence.