Plant Imports Strategy released today
The release of the Plant Germplasm Imports Council Strategy today is a milestone on our journey to improve the plant imports system. It comes after more than a year of work with MPI and industry.
This has been a high priority for NZPPI. With a clear instruction from our members that they are looking for change we have taken every opportunity to be involved.
The new strategy provides a roadmap to do this in a planned, systematic way. There are still difficult conversations needed to implement the strategy, like how to balance progress and protection, but there is now some clarity about how to do this.
What the strategy means for our sector
We have pressed hard for greater recognition of greenlife (ornamental) imports, that have historically been a lower priority than so called ' high value' horticulture crops. Obviously, horticulture and viticulture are critical industries but we have argued that the plant imports system is for the benefit of everyone in Aotearoa New Zealand, not just farmers and growers. As a result, greenlife and urban development feature strongly in the new strategy - a win for that part of our sector.
For the primary industries, the plant imports strategy underpins the Fit for a Better World primary sector strategy, which calls for innovation and new varieties to drive exports in the future. This means clearing the way for germplasm to come into the country from offshore breeding programmes, using a far simpler and faster process.
We understand the frustration plant importers have with the system. This strategy is a single step in the process, but we encourage our members to get in behind it and help make it a success.
NZPPI is holding Zoom meeting at 10.30am on Thursday April 7 to discuss what the strategy means for our industry and how we can work together to create new solutions and opportunities. Register for the meeting here.