19 Jul 2011

Beekeepers undecided on signing biosecurity agreement

3:43 pm on 19 July 2011

Beekeepers are weighing up the pros and cons of signing an agreement with the Government on sharing the costs and responsibilities of dealing with pest and disease incursions.

Agriculture and Biosecurity Minister David Carter has made it clear that the proposed biosecurity partnership arrangement, called the Government-Industry Agreement, will happen irrespective of whether different sectors choose to sign up.

The National Beekeepers Association has welcomed the Government decision to increase the Crown's minimum financial contribution to biosecurity responses.

But chief executive Daniel Paul says there are still a lot of questions that beekeepers need to work through before they sign a deed of agreement.

Mr Paul says the National Beekeepers Association also needs to consult with the other beekeeper organisation, Federated Farmers Bee Industry Group, and the thousands of other registered bee-keepers, mainly small-scale hobby operators, who don't belong to either body.