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Australia : Biosecurity first- banana permits protect the Territory.

The Minister for Primary Industry and Fisheries, Gary Higgins, today purchased banana plants from Allora Gardens Nursery for planting on his personal property.

Minister Higgins highlighted the need for Territorians to act responsibly and apply for a permit before buying banana plants.

Permits are free of charge and allow holders to move the banana plants from place of purchase to the address listed on their permit, and to plant and cultivate, Minister Higgins said.

The permit is extremely important as it allows Plant Health Inspectors to know where banana plants are, so they can monitor the plants for signs of Banana Freckle.

It is essential that we take every precaution, and put a robust and secure system in place that will secure the future of the banana industry in the Territory. Biosecurity is a top priority for me; I take it very seriously.

If Plant Health Inspectors find banana plants in Red Zones that are not covered by a permit, fines may apply, Minister Higgins said.

Minister Higgins was also pleased to announce that Territorians can buy disease?free banana plants for planting in the greater Darwin area.

Allora Gardens Nursery have obtained, under permit, 350 disease-free lady finger banana plantlets, from accredited interstate suppliers located in areas free of Banana Freckle, to supply local residents and growers.

If members of the community want to purchase banana plants, it is vital they apply for a permit before they make their purchase.

The National Banana Freckle Eradication Program is Australias largest cost-sharing emergency plant pest response under the National Emergency Plant Pest Response Deed to date and involves Federal, State, industry and community support.

Significant funding is being provided by the Australian Banana Growers Council, with contributions from all jurisdictions and significant financial and in-kind support from the NT Department of Primary Industry and Fisheries.

Eradicating Banana Freckle will ensure backyard growers and the commercial industry can grow healthy plants in the future.

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Publication:Mena Report
Date:Jun 8, 2016
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