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Disappointment with spraying complaints

Friday, 11 March 2011 2:00 p.m.

Recent complaints over spray drift and lack of warning to the public about agrichemical spraying are a major setback, according to Bay of Plenty Regional Council.

Bay of Plenty Regional Council Group Manager Water Management, Eddie Grogan says he is very disappointed by the complaints over recent aerial agrichemical spraying that have not been correctly notified, signposted, or have resulted in spray drift. The complaints are a significant setback given recent collaborative effort that has gone into ensuring compliance with spraying rules.

"I am concerned that the very good progress we have made over the last two years with the horticultural sector agrichemical spraying has been severely dented by a lack of attention to the rules from the people involved in Psa prevention spraying," Mr Grogan said.

A spray drift action group was established in 2009 including industry and community members. This group has contributed to significant progress and success with spraying notification and management. 

However, the recent Psa outbreak in Bay of Plenty kiwifruit orchards involves aerial spraying which seems to have circumvented many of the required procedures.

Bay of Plenty Regional Council has received five complaints and is in the process of investigating them.

"The rules are set for a reason. It is important for orchardists and contractors to know that if the rules are broken there will be consequences," Mr Grogan said.  

Bay of Plenty Regional Council is working with kiwifruit industry groups to ensure everyone involved with Psa spraying is aware of the requirements.

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For further media information please contact Clare Dowthwaite, Communications Advisor, on 021 989 666 or 0800 884 880

 

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