Hitchhiking spider found on kiwifruit
Thanks to the eagle eyes of a packhouse staff member, no biosecurity risk was faced after a live spider was discovered in a carton of imported Italian kiwifruit.
In early January the spider was spotted on fruit delivered to the packhouse by a fresh fruit importer. It was photographed, captured, and reported through to the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) and KVH, who recently visited key fruit importers to raise awreness of biosecurity threats and highlight what they can do to mitigate risk.
The importer also checked and confirmed that there weren’t any further spiders or other bugs in their produce.
MPI have since ID’d the spider and confirmed no further acton is required.
Big congratulations to the packhouse and import staff involved for knowing what to do once they spotted something unusual and taking immediate action. The sooner MPI and KVH know of any possible biosecurity issue the sooner we can minimise any harm that might be done and make sure there is nothing for industry to worry about.