December 2002. Vanuatu has a bilateral agreement with New Zealand for the export of “Queen” pineapple and they have having continuous problems with a pineapple mealy bug. To counter this problem it was recommended that the exporter use high pressure air to remove the mealybugs, but this does not solve the problem. A better method apart from fumigation was required.
In response, a member made mention that Biosecurity Australia (BA) has recently undertaken an Import Risk Analysis (IRA) of fresh pineapples from all parts of the world into Australia. This is called a generic analysis and is, therefore, very thorough. All the documents and recommendations can be downloaded and read from the AFFA website below. Contact addresses for BA are also available at this site.
Mealybugs are a key pest group in pineapple pest risk analyses and, as a result, top removal, which also removes much of the risk of importing weed seeds lodged in the crowns, is required by BA. Fumigation may still be required, but it was suggested that Vanuatu check the website. Various methods such as airbrushing, insecticidal dips, fumigation and infield protocols were considered as possibilities to reduce the risks of pest importation during the IRA process.