Government to blame for latest Blueberry rust outbreak

Tasmanian Labor
  • Blueberry
    rust outbreak the result of the Government’s mismanagement
  • Government
    has failed to learn from its mistakes
  • The Minister
    must quarantine Biosecurity Tasmania from $450 million budget cuts
  • The
    Hodgman Minority Government’s mismanagement of biosecurity in Tasmania is to
    blame for the latest outbreak of Blueberry rust in Tasmania.

    Shadow
    Minister for Primary Industries, Fisheries and Water, Shane Broad, said the
    Government had failed to learn from its mistakes.

    “This
    is the fourth major outbreak of Blueberry rust in Tasmania in recent times and
    also comes after an extensive parliamentary inquiry into the disease – but what
    has the Government learned? Absolutely nothing,” Dr Broad said.

    “We
    know staff at Biosecurity Tasmania are under pressure and this has been
    compounded by the fact the Government has to redirect staff to deal with last
    year’s fruit fly outbreak.

    “This
    Government has an appalling track record of protecting Tasmania’s agricultural
    sector from pests and diseases and it is clear its mismanagement of biosecurity
    in Tasmania is to blame for this latest outbreak.

    “The
    Minister must give a guarantee that it will quarantine Biosecurity Tasmania
    from its savage $450 million budget cuts as Tasmania’s agricultural sector
    can’t afford to manage yet another major threat.

    “Tasmanians
    deserve to have confidence that a rigorous system in place to protect their
    business and their environment.

    “I urge Tasmanians to be vigilant and check their blueberry plants for the disease and report anything suspicious to Biosecurity Tasmania.”

    Shane Broad MP

    Shadow Minister for Primary Industries, Fisheries and Water

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