25 Apr 2012

Banks to put money into PSA research

10:21 am on 25 April 2012

The kiwifruit industry's research and development programme for the bacterial disease PSA has received a financial boost.

The disease has been identified on 35% of orchards, covering more than 6000 hectares of kiwifruit, mostly in Bay of Plenty and will cost at least $100 million this year in lost export production.

Kiwifruit marketer Zespri and independent body Kiwifruit Vine Health have a research and development programme aimed at finding a commercial solution for the industry.

Zespri's PSA innovation manager David Tanner says the ANZ National bank and Rabobank have agreed to help sponsor the progamme.

Kiwifruit Vine Health chief executive Barry O'Neil says the sponsorship initiatives indicate the goodwill among industry stakeholders to find solutions for PSA.