Citrus growers step-by-step orchard biosecurity advice

Citrus growers step-by-step orchard biosecurity advice

Every citrus grower needs to take action to protect their orchards from introducing or spreading weeds, pests and diseases and the new Biosecurity Manual for Citrus Producers explains exactly what to do.

Publication of the new orchard biosecurity manual by Plant Health Australia (PHA), the coordinators of the plant biosecurity partnership in Australia, is the latest biosecurity initiative from the Citrus Biosecurity Project, which aims to boost preparedness and prevention for exotic pests of the citrus industry.

Alison Saunders: PHA’s Biosecurity Planning and Implementation Manager

Alison Saunders, PHA’s Biosecurity Planning and Implementation Manager, said the manual explains all the basic principles needed for individual growers to protect themselves and their industry.

“Pests, weeds and diseases can severely affect production if they enter and establish on your orchard,” said Ms Saunders. “It makes good business sense to take measures to improve biosecurity and the manual takes growers through step-by-step how they can do this.

“Key measures include regular monitoring of orchards and reporting anything unusual without delay, using reputable sources for propagation material brought onto the property, good orchard hygiene and reducing risks posed by people, vehicles and equipment,” Ms Saunders said.

The manual also describes the symptoms and appearance of exotic pest threats to the citrus industry to give the best chance that any incursion into Australia is quickly detected and controlled.

Growers can obtain a copy of the manual through Citrus Australia or download a version from the PHA website.

The manual and the other parts of the Citrus Biosecurity Project are funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia Limited and jointly managed by PHA and Citrus Australia.

First published in Leading Agriculture Issue 6