Establishment of systems to validate pest free place of production for Queensland fruit fly in the Yarra Valley (MT13031)
What was it all about?
Due to changes in the management of Queensland fruit fly (Qfly) in Victoria, cherry, rubus and strawberry growers in the Yarra Valley, east of Melbourne, were required to treat fruit under an approved treatment protocol to access the South Australian, Western Australian and Tasmanian markets.
This two-year project which ran from 2013 to 2015 developed a Pest Free Place of Production (PFPP) program in the Yarra Valley, which enabled growers to consign produce to these markets without the need for the treatment specified by the protocol.
Domestic recognition of the region’s PFPP status was achieved in year one of the project. By the second year (2014/2015) significant amounts of cherries (60 tonnes), raspberries (10 tonnes), blackberries (24 tonnes), strawberries (14 tonnes) and cherry tomatoes (10 tonnes) were marketed into SA and WA under the arrangements.
Qfly was not detected in permanent Qfly traps throughout the duration of the project, although the incidence of the pest rose dramatically across much of northern Victoria.
Based on the escalating Qfly risk the project committee will redesign this work, to focus instead on risk management and robust management options for Yarra Valley growers rather than PFPP status.
This project has been funded by Hort Innovation
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