29 Oct 2012

PSA meeting for Kerikeri kiwifruit growers

6:25 am on 29 October 2012

A full turnout of kiwifruit growers is expected at a meeting in Kerikeri on Monday, to hear how they should respond to the arrival of the PSA-V vine disease in their area.

Kiwifruit Vine Health confirmed the district's first case of PSA in a single gold variety vine late last week.

The agency has established a control zone around the infected orchard, which encompasses more than 100 orchards and almost all of the kiwifruit blocks in the district.

A Kerikeri fruit growers representative, Rick Curtis, who also has gold kiwifruit, says they are still stunned and will be wanting to know what the control zone means.

He says growers will need a realistic view of what is likely to happen with PSA based on what has happened in other regions.

Mr Curtis says everyone likes to think that the disease will not be as virulent in Northland as elsewhere.

"But I think we have to be really realistic and expect that it will spread from here and that we are going to have to deal with an ongoing increase in the number of positive finds in the district."

Mr Curtis says growers are hoping that the single case of PSA has been detected early enough to give them a good chance of controlling its spread.

The meeting is at 2pm on Monday at the Turner Centre in Kerikeri.