Media Release

​Flying in formation to ground fruit flies​

15 April 2015

Efforts to combat fruit fly were today given a boost with funding announced to support a workshop aimed at improving and encouraging a consistent, national approach to fruit fly identification.

Minister for Agriculture, Barnaby Joyce, said that the Coalition Government’s efforts against fruit fly were critical to Australia’s horticulture industry and trade.

“Following years of neglect under the former government I am pleased that we are delivering a strong monitoring and response system for exotic fruit fly incursions to better facilitate the movement of produce and food around the country and overseas. Timely and accurate identification of fruit flies underpins this system.” Minister Joyce said.

“Many trading nations require us to be fruit fly free to take our produce.

“Our horticulture exports were worth an estimated $1.9 billion in 2013–14, and a strong biosecurity system helps maintain our clean green reputation overseas which is critical to this trade.”

Minister Joyce also said sharing knowledge and expertise was critical in our biosecurity efforts against fruit fly.

“This workshop will deliver the most up-to-date diagnostic information direct to the experts so they can continue the fight against fruit flies in Australia,” Minister Joyce said.

“It also provides specialised training on the latest techniques and practices to make sure experts across the country are on the same page and working from the same information.

“We need to make sure we continue to have a cohesive, consistent national approach to managing fruit fly and this workshop is a good opportunity to foster that approach.

“The funding for this workshop, provided to Plant Health Australia, is another example of the Coalition Government’s commitment to a strong biosecurity system.”

The outcomes from the workshop will inform a revised edition of The Australian Handbook for the Identification of Fruit Flies—the bible for fruit fly diagnosticians across the country.

This workshop, facilitated by Plant Health Australia, is co-funded by the Department of Agriculture and the Plant Biosecurity Cooperative Research Centre.

For more information on fruit fly identification visit the Plant Health Australia website.