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Monthly Bulletin


August 2023 

This semi-regular update from the GIA Secretariat is intended to provide a general overview of the key matters considered by GIA governance bodies in the preceding month. It is not intended to communicate formal decisions by any of the parties, nor everything that happens within GIA. If there are any questions, or further information is required please contact

Lepidoptera Working Group: 4 August 2023

  • Group discussion focused on final reports from two projects - Lepidoptera groupings and priority species; and Control tools and Bacillus thuringiensis kurstaki (Btk) access.
  • In regard to a readiness and response grouping parameter, the report proposed five groups:
    • Climbing leaf mass consumers - aerial Btk appropriate control method
    • Fruit borers - targeting the adults using lures etc
    • Above ground stand reducers - Btk, or Bta, different surveillance approach
    • Fruit piercing moths - adult stage does the damage
    • Butterflies – not attracted to pheromone lures
  • The meeting also heard from MPI’s Ngā Tūhono team on how GIA OA and pest councils might engage with and include Māori and a Te Ao Māori perspective.  Such an approach would likely include:    
    • Increasing awareness of Te Ao Māori principles and approach at a generic preparedness level 
    • As pest/geographical relationships are established, drill down into local engagement as places of impact are identified, and potentially impacted iwi are identified.
  • Other group activity includes:
    • Support and funding for a Scion proposal to develop a portable electroantennogram device to improve rapid population delimitation surveillance to inform response decision making.
  • The group will next meet 18 October to refine its workplan based on grouping/priorities and control/Btk tools projects.

Livestock Sector Biosecurity Council (LSBC): 14 August 2023

  • LSBC received a series of presentations providing a stocktake of the FMD Taskforce’s achievements, the current position of the overall work programme, and detailing the status of the various workstreams now making up the FMD Work Programme. Presentations highlighted ongoing work in relation to:
  • The development of an OA under GIA
  • The development of an FMD Response Information Management System
  • The development of a sheep traceability system
  • Enhancements to the Animal Health Laboratory’s readiness capabilities and capacity
  • A focus on farmer and rural support initiatives
  • The development of a national strategy to respond to FMD in NZ
  • An update to the National Response and Recovery Plan.
  • Development of an assurance framework to provide confidence that preparedness levels can be maintained.
  • Training and capability development
  • Development of an exercise programme
  • Establishment of a network of private veterinarians
  • Work to manage risks associated with feeding swill to pigs
  • Finalisation of the FMD communications plan and related collateral
  • Progression of business continuity planning
  • Detailed presentations were provided on detailing initiatives in relation to trade and market access, the development of a national strategy for FMD, readiness priorities for FMD in 23/24, the raw milk collection scheme, the germplasm scheme, and rural support initiatives.
  • LSBC received an update on progress with the review of the biosecurity legislation and expectations about the likely timing of Ministerial consideration of proposals and public consultation, likely to be well into 2024. Industry member agreed to hold a workshop, over the next few weeks, to collate ideas for legislative change into a cohesive package.
  • An update was provided on the recent World Organisation of Animal Health (WOAH), in particular the formal declaration in relation to the crisis in the Ukraine, the response to the spread of avian influenza around the world, the deferral of FMD decisions until 2024, and the adoption of new BSE rules in relation to the treatment of atypical BSE.
  • Members were pleased to note the designation of the MPI Animal Health Laboratory as a WOAH Reference Laboratory for American foulbrood.
  • Members discussed the development of an FMDOA, and the interim step to develop an MOU between the parties which, amongst other things, should lock in some of the detail of the various work streams of the FMD work programme.

Solanaceae Biosecurity Working Group (SBWG): 15 August 2023

  • The meeting’s focus was to determine SBWG future focus owing to changing priorities among members and whether the imperative for a broad-based approach to viral threat to Solanaceae was still valid.
  • The consensus amongst members was that an OA-based approach was still very much valid, but having already completed some foundational work, the OA doesn’t need a group-wide workplan and associated financial commitments at commencement. 
  • An approach whereby projects may be initiated and funded by a subset of parties on a cost share to be agreed at the time the project is established was favoured.
  • The Group will meet in a month’s time to consider a redraft of the OA to meet the above objectives.

GIA Operations Limited (GOL) Board: 18 August 2023

The Board considered a number of governance and work programme related matters and agreed:

  • light touch enhancements to the company’s governance structure are appropriate – incorporating the development of a high-level Board Charter, alignment of Board performance objectives with those of the CE, and adoption of an annual Board calendar.
  • at this stage the establishment of a Board Finance and Audit function is not required
  • the 5th position on the Board should be filled, with an appropriately skilled director sourced from within the partnership.
  • consideration of some formal financial recognition of the commitment of directors’ home organisations is appropriate, and the Secretariat will include options for consideration in the process to set the 24/25 work programme and budget.
  • a summary of the legal opinion on obligations to Māori under GIA should be circulated around the wider partnership and the associated preparation of pan-GIA guidance regard should be prioritised. GOL noted that the ongoing Caulerpa and Freshwater Clam responses have included significant involvement of iwi and provide a good reference point for the development of the guidance.
  • Agreed that the DGG meeting in November 2023 should be held in Wellington, with a likely focus on the post-election political landscape and the status of the legislative review (amongst other things). The March 2024 DGG meeting is expected to be an ‘away day’.
  • the draft GIA Sponsorship policy is suitable for consideration by the wider DGG.
  • GOL’s 2022/23 financial statements are suitable for Chair and CE sign off
  • Given the advice from GOL’s brokers (in relation to the continued tightness of the insurance market, the risks for GOL of ending up with no insurance, or more expensive insurance, and the lack of options), no full market review is expected as part of this year’s annual insurance renewal.

Plant Biosecurity Council: 25 August 2023

       Key matters discussed were as follows: 

  • Reports of an emerging Radiata Pine Pathogen (Brown Needle disease) in Australia. 
  • The possible identification of a new nematode in a kiwifruit orchard in NZ. 
  • The report from Biosecurity NZ of a Thrips find on a gorse bush in the Auckland region, and the associated timing of notification to industry partners. 
  • The status of the review of Biosecurity legislation and the likely timing of Ministerial consideration of proposals and public consultation, likely to be well into 2024. Industry members agreed to hold a workshop, over the next few weeks, to collate ideas for legislative change into a cohesive package, noting that a similar workshop is planned for the Livestock partners and, ideally, both meetings will be held in time for any shared issues to be addressed at the DGG meeting in early November 2023. 
  • Learnings from the recent hui in Tauranga as part of planning for engagement with Māori in a BMSB response.  
  • An overview of the move to performance-based verification system audits by MPI. 
  • An overview of the ongoing Caulerpa and gold clam responses – which although not under GIA provide a useful insight into the broader sweep of matters MPI is involved in. 
  • Planning for an apiculture sector biosecurity incursion– members noted that most GIA sectors will likely be impacted by a biosecurity incursion in the apiculture sector, and its ongoing absence from GIA creates risk of readiness falling through the cracks.  
  • Biosecurity NZ Readiness prioritisation, with proposals expected for consideration shortly.  
  • A report back on the recent KVH Biosecurity Symposium.  
  • FMD Standstill and FAW lessons learnt – Biosecurity NZ confirmed these processes are expected to get underway shortly. 
  • Solanaceous Biosecurity Working group –Members noted that the SBWG intends to complete an OA but may defer the commencement of a costs shared work programme. 

 Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Council (BMSBC): 30 August 2023

  • The Council noted good results on the BMSB Awareness Campaign and agreed to utilise the same creative materials for this year and consider the development of new creative next year.
  • Council reviewed progress on all current projects making up its work programme and, amongst other things:
    • Noted progress, working with PFR, with work in relation to the importation of samurai wasp into containment in NZ and in relation to host searching for samurai wasp
    • Discussed options in relation to insect growth regulators and the use of novaluron in NZ
    • Noted progress in relation to the review of Korean literature on BMSB; and discussed arrangements for a forthcoming visit by BMSBC representatives with Chilean counterparts (including the related use of the 3D printed BMSB models)
    • Noted progress within Biosecurity NZ in relation to work on the transition to long term management
    • Sought confirmation of the availability of requisite chemical tools in NZ ahead of the forthcoming high-risk season
    • Agreed next steps for work reviewing the operational specifications for samurai wasp release
    • Agreed next steps for a pilot trialing aerodynamic traps
  • Agreed to refresh and republish the BMSBC strategic framework.
  • Engagement with Iwi continues to be an important issue topic with Council noting that there are differing positions from Iwi across, and within, the regions regarding the use of biocontrol agents, and the position on use of Samurai Wasps in a response therefore needs to be clearly understood well in advance of the need for the decision being made. This continues to be a pan-GIA issue and Council recorded a willingness to work with other Horticulture sector groups to formulate a way forward to enhance engagement with Iwi
  • Council are keen to understand the MPI Compensation and Assessment process and are working with MPI and the Fruit Fly Council to progress this.


July 2023 Bulletin 




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