15 Jan 2013

Ministry will continue funding for kauri disease research

2:01 pm on 15 January 2013

The Ministry of Primary Industries has confirmed it will continue to fund a programme aimed at stopping the spread of a disease which threatens the country's kauri trees.

Labour Party associate environment spokesperson Phil Twyford has said he fears the ministry will not fund research into the disease beyond next year.

But the director of the ministry's investigation and diagnostic centre, Veronica Herrera, said it is absolutely committed to continuing the work.

She said the kauri is an iconic species and the ministry will focus on efforts to avoid the continous spread of the disease.

Ms Herrera said the ministry will fund research into how to treat the disease and into the development of disease-resistant plants.