19 Dec 2011

HortNZ concerned at poor recovery of strawberry kits

6:37 am on 19 December 2011

Horticulture New Zealand says more than 1200 strawberry seed kits that bypassed quarantine procedures are still unaccounted for.

Buzzy Strawberry Mini Grow Kits, imported from China and including seeds and potting mix, were recalled by the Ministry of Agriculture (MAF) last month because of fears they could introduce diseases to fruit crops.

More than 1300 kits were sold through The Warehouse from September but HortNZ says so far only about 80 kits have been disposed of.

It says it is disappointed at the response to the recall and the time MAF is taking to investigate the breach.

MAF says it hopes to complete the investigation by early next year.

It says it includes an examination of its wider biosecurity system and the Import Health Standard.

HortNZ asks members of the public who have disposed of the kits, to inform MAF.