A national management plan for dealing with the kiwifruit Psa virus has been formally approved by the Government, Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy has announced today.
"This plan means that the primary responsibility for managing Psa is now moving to the industry themselves as they are best placed to co-ordinate and lead the response.
"As part of this, the Government has approved a levy rate on exported kiwifruit equating to one cent per tray for green fruit and two cents a tray for gold fruit. This will help cover disease management, monitoring, plant material movement and dealing with unmanaged and abandoned orchards.
"The levy has been voted on by growers and will have a shortfall until yields return to pre-Psa levels. Therefore Cabinet has agreed that $3.5 million remaining from the initial Government funding of $25 million will be passed to Kiwifruit Vine Health (KVH) to implement the plan.
"Since the discovery of Psa in Te Puke in late 2010 there has been a very effective partnership between the Government and the industry on disease management. The Government has provided $25 million, matched dollar for dollar by industry, to help fight the disease.
"The industry body charged with managing Psa, Kiwifruit Vine Health (KVH), has done a great job in consulting with growers throughout New Zealand and developing the proposal for this plan.
It has been pleasing to see a high-level of support from growers to establishing the plan," says Mr Guy.
Mr Guy says that despite moving the management of Psa to industry, the Government still has a strong interest in the recovery of the kiwifruit industry.