NT Pomelos head South under tight new biosecurity protocol

For the first time since the citrus canker restrictions were put in place earlier this year, a commercial grower from Northern Territory (NT) has sent citrus fruit to the Melbourne markets.

NT biosecurity officer Shane Cross examines a pomelo prior to shipment.NT biosecurity officer Shane Cross examines a pomelo prior to shipment.

NT biosecurity officer Shane Cross examines a pomelo prior to shipment.

A Lambells Lagoon grower legally sent a total of 250 kilograms of pomelos, a popular citrus fruit, to market in late July. The resumption of trade takes place under a stringent new protocol agreed upon by all state governments. The protocol stipulates a procedure for growers and pack houses to follow in order to move citrus fruit outside the control area, including zero detections on the property, surveillance, pre-treatment and quarantine inspection of fruit prior to it being sent to market.

NT Executive Director for Biosecurity and Animal Welfare, Sarah Corcoran said “the department recognises biosecurity incursions place a huge strain on local growers, we worked very hard to get these protocols in place so that growers could resume trade where the conditions were met”.

“To date there has been no detection of citrus canker on any commercial citrus growing properties and we continue to work with the Northern Territory Farmers Association to help keep growers informed,” Ms Corcoran said.

Growers and pack houses wanting to move fruit must be registered under the Northern Territory Government’s new protocols, as agreed with other Australian States and Territories, and require permit approval.

For more information contact Plant Biosecurity on 08 8999 2118.

Last updated: 18 October 2018