KPCS changes ensure biosecurity risk is managed
With biosecurity being an essential service and KVH continuing to operate, staff are working from home to maintain social distancing and will only be venturing out where it is absolutely necessary, in order to help keep nursery operators and our staff safe.
For the Kiwifruit Plant Certification Scheme (KPCS), we have an approach that we feel strikes the right balance of managing biosecurity risk, supporting the government’s Covid-19 efforts, and supporting nurseries to maintain their business of getting plants to growers this season.
KVH has suspended collection of nursery leaf samples for KPCS testing while the country is at alert level 4. Over 85% of nurseries have already been sampled and tested and if possible, we will resume sampling the remainder when the restrictions lift, and leaves are in good health.
To keep people safe, KVH and our auditors AsureQuality will avoid KPCS site audits during the level 4 lockdown period. Nurseries whose certification is due to expire during this period may have their annual audits postponed or completed as a desktop audit by phone with follow up site visits later in the year. Where necessary, KVH will endeavour to ensure that all nurseries receive an independent visit, either for sampling or audit if not both. KVH has requested that nurseries are transparent with growers and note on the dispatch record if there have been deviations from the normal KPCS testing or audit protocol.