22 Feb 2013

Minister meets with PSA-affected growers

3:34 pm on 22 February 2013

The Minister for Primary Industries has met PSA-affected kiwifruit growers in Bay of Plenty for the first time since becoming minister this year.

Since November 2010, the virulent strain of the vine-killing disease PSA-V has been found on kiwifruit blocks covering more than 9500 hectares.

The disease has now spread to all the main kiwifruit growing areas of the North Island and in December last year was declared a medium-scale biosecurity event.

On Friday morning Nathan Guy visited orchardists near Te Puke to see the damage.

Kiwifruit Growers president Neil Trebilcoe says growers are in discussions with the Government about criteria for rural assistance payments which are associated with the adverse event declaration.

Mr Trebilcoe says it is important to have the support of Government and for the minister to see what growers are going through.