Two more orchards in the Gisborne district have tested
positive for the kiwifruit vine-killing disease Psa-V and
more are expected, but growers still see a good future.
The latest cases take the district total to six of the
district's 66 orchards.
"Kiwifruit Vine Health expects to see more cases of the
disease in this region," said KVH chief executive Barry
"The Gisborne region has a lot of older 'gold' kiwifruit
variety hort 16A, which has proven particularly vulnerable to
"The high content of 16A is going to be very challenging when
Psa-V is present."
Kiwifruit grower and KVH regional co-ordinator Tim Egan said
Gisborne growers growing the 16A variety were progressively
switching over to more Psa-tolerant varieties.
"That transition is well under way. This will more than
likely be the last season that 16A kiwifruit are grown in
Gisborne," Mr Egan said.
The latest Psa-V cases are the first new infected sites
identified here since late last year.
"One of the orchards is at Nuhaka and the other is close to
the original outbreak at Te Karaka," Barry O'Neil said.
The infestations were identified last week.
"It was as a result of growers monitoring their vines," Mr
"Samples were collected by KVH and tested.
"One set of test results came back positive last week and the
other tests came back positive a couple of days ago," he
So far, 2271 kiwifruit orchards around the North Island have
tested positive for the disease out of 3271 orchards.
Tim Egan said the latest Psa-V finds in Gisborne were in line
"This is the pattern of disease progression seen elsewhere in
The latest cases reinforce the message for Gisborne growers
to continue to monitor their vines, and apply proven crop
protection products, Mr O'Neil said.
"Spring time is when we see the majority of Psa-V progession,
which is often associated with weather events.
"Windy and wet days tend to encourage the disease to move and
It would be about normal to see disease progession 7-10 days
after a major storm event at this time of year, he said.
Tim Egan said good orchard management and a dry summer
minimised further spread after the initial outbreak late last
"There was no impact on the crop harvest in the district in
"The crop was great."
Mr Egan said the new "gold"variety that growers were
switching to looked very promising, both as a Psa-tolerant
variety and as a marketable fruit.
"It grows exceptionally well here.
"While the next few months will be challenging for some local
16A growers, the future of the industry here looks really