Ginger industry signs up to emergency plant pest response agreement

January 14, 2015

The ginger industry has become the latest plant industry to sign up to the Emergency Plant Pest Response Deed (EPPRD), providing certainty for growers in the event of an incursion of an emergency plant pest that affects ginger.

The Australian Ginger Industry Association (AGIA) became signatories to the EPPRD at a Plant Health Australia (PHA) meeting in Canberra late last year.

PHA is the custodian of the agreement, which sets out how plant pest incursions are dealt with and how the cost of an eradication response is cost shared.

With AGIA joining the EPPRD, there are now 40 parties to the agreement, including PHA, all Australian governments and 30 plant industries.

Susanna Driessen, Emergency Preparedness and Response Manager at PHA welcomed the move saying that it was an important step in ensuring the future viability and sustainability of the industry.

AGIA President Anthony Rehbein said he was pleased that the industry had taken the step of becoming a signatory, in the light of recent biosecurity concerns.

“The EPPRD is very valuable to the ginger industry,” Mr Rehbein said. “We know from the pest threat analysis that PHA did last year that there are exotic pests out there that we really don’t want in Australia.”

“Signing up to the EPPRD gives us the knowledge that should an emergency plant pest make it onto farms, Australian Ginger will have a seat at the table with government, deciding on the appropriate course of action.”

“It also means that the costs of the response will be shared between the industry and government and, importantly for growers, those adversely affected by any eradication response may be eligible for reimbursement,” Mr Rehbein said.

Commercial ginger production occurs predominantly in the southeast corner of Queensland from the Sunshine Coast to Bundaberg.

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