Exciting milestone for new biosecurity lab facilities

20 July 2023

At last year’s grower Biosecurity Day, a popular guest presentation was the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) talking about the new Plant Health and Environment Laboratory (PHEL) facility in Auckland.

The new facility is now in its second of four design phases, including proposed layouts of the new lab, greenhouse, and office spaces. Notably, the new design offers significant flexibility to deal with the increasing demand for testing to manage biosecurity risk.

Until the new facility opens in 2028, MPI are building 12 new interim quarantine greenhouses, doubling the MPI current capacity for processing imports of plant material.

The interim greenhouses are due to be completed in October, with the facility receiving its first plants in the first half of 2024.

Image: Artist's impression of the exterior of the new PHEL (subject to change), showing the entry, office and laboratory areas (left to right).