The claim by kiwifruit growers against the Government for the Psa outbreak is heading back to court on Monday – this time to the Court of Appeal.
The High Court last June partially upheld a claim brought by Strathboss Kiwifruit Ltd, representing a class of 212 kiwifruit orchardists, and Te Puke-based post-harvest operator Seeka, against the Ministry for Primary Industries for failing to prevent the devastating disease from entering the country in 2009.
Judge Jillian Mallon said the former MAF owed a duty of care to kiwifruit growers.
In July, MPI appealed the High Court's decision.
The Crown appeal seeks to clarify the scope for government regulators to be sued in negligence.
MPI said the High Court's finding traversed events dating back 12 years, pre-dating the establishment of the Ministry.
The Ministry also considered the High Court finding had the potential to significantly impact on the Ministry's biosecurity operations.
A cross-appeal filed by the plaintiffs Seeks to confirm that MPI was negligent when they failed to inspect the shipment of banned kiwifruit plant material, infected with Psa, at the border when it arrived from China and challenges the decision that the Government did not owe a duty of care to Seeka as a post-harvest operator.