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Rountine council inspections resume

Friday, 21 January 2011 9:30 a.m.

Bay of Plenty Regional Council is lifting restrictions on orchard access for Council staff and contractors, which has been in place since November.

The Regional Council continues to work closely with the newly formed Kiwifruit Vine Health (KVH) organisation to ensure proper orchard hygiene measures are in place for orchard visits, along with other matters relating to Psa. Consents officers and other staff normally visit kiwifruit orchards regularly for inspections.

Regional Council Land Management Group Manager Warwick Murray said the Council is working closely with KVH on developing protocols required for orchard visits.

The Council is continuing to assist the industry in dealing with Psa and is re-commencing its consent compliance checks and other on-orchard work, subject to staff complying with an agreed set of protocols.

Regional Council staff and contractors must follow strict procedures, which include observing any site-specific protocols at each orchard, parking outside the orchard away from vines where practical, wearing disposable overalls and disposing of them between properties and undertaking disinfectant processes before and after each inspection. Staff must also disinfect tyres, footwear, tools and equipment and ensure no leaves or other material is attached to their vehicles.