Response to article about wild kiwifruit vines

30 April 2018

KVH has provided the below response to the Marlborough Express in regards to an article on wild kiwifruit vines.

Dear Editor,

Over the weekend and the Sunday Star Times published an article from one of your reporters on wild kiwifruit vines.

The article included valuable information about the topic that is important for the public to be aware of, however from our perspective there was an unnecessarily alarmist tone to the article overall. KVH, several regional councils and unitary authorities all work together on initiatives to manage wild kiwifruit vines and have done so, very successfully, for many years as part of our usual business.

There were some inaccuracies that need correcting:

· KVH said that it’s not very often an industry comes along and asks that the plant on which that industry is based is named as a pest. We did not ask that the produce/kiwifruit be named as a pest.

· Contractors destroyed 14,600 wild vines in 2017 and not since 2010.

· Wild kiwifruit vines have historically established from dumped fruit and the discovery of fruit stickers has proved this. Dumped fruit is not “scraps” and we said wild vines can also establish from unconsumed fruit left in a compost heap.

KVH is always happy to review facts used by your reporters in the interest of ensuring correct information about what is a complex and technical programme of work, can be provided to readers.

Lastly, we would also like to clarify that KVH is not a lobby group. We are the kiwifruit industry’s biosecurity organisation, funded by growers, and we work collaboratively with all parties across the industry as well as government.

Kind regards,

Stu Hutchings
Chief Executive