Search is on for New Zealand’s biosecurity champions

Entries are open for the 2022 New Zealand Biosecurity Awards, which recognise and celebrate the outstanding contributions made around  New Zealand to protect the country against pests and diseases.

Biosecurity Deputy-Director General Stuart Anderson said some New Zealanders don’t realise that the work they’re undertaking in their own backyards plays a critical role in the biosecurity system. From trapping pests like catfish, rats and stoats to disease management in  forests, rivers and oceans, the system is strengthened, he said.

Last year, the highest number of entries in the history of the awards was received,

“… and while competition was high, so was the quality.”

Winning projects included:a world-leading maritime intelligence tool which can detect hitchhiker pests from space, a highly sought after marine biosecurity team in Bay of Plenty, and an ecological restoration project turning retired exotic forestry into a mosaic of sustainable land uses.

“A strong biosecurity system takes all of us. We are grateful to receive continued support for these Awards from our fantastic sponsors – AsureQuality, Eagle Technology, Government Industry Agreement (GIA), Mondiale VGL and New Zealand’s Biological Heritage – we couldn’t do it without them,” said Mr Anderson.

The impact of being a winner at the New Zealand Biosecurity Awards goes beyond the recognition and celebration of the Award’s night.

Last year’s Supreme Winner was Xerra Earth Observation Institute.

“The recognition of Starboard’s work through these awards has been enormously motivating to continue our journey towards science-based benefits for all Aotearoa,” said Xerra Programme leader Moritz Lehman.

“Biosecurity challenges need a team approach and we sincerely thank the intensive co-development support from staff at Biosecurity New Zealand who now use our tool to help protect our maritime border from invasive species.”

The New Zealand Biosecurity Awards categories are:

  • BioHeritage Challenge Community Award
  • New Zealand Biosecurity Māori Award
  • New Zealand Biosecurity Kura (School) Award
  • GIA Industry Award
  • Eagle Technology Local and Central Government Award
  • New Zealand Biosecurity Science Award
  • Mondiale VGL Innovation Award
  • AsureQuality Emerging Leader Award
  • Minister’s Biosecurity Award
  • Supreme Award

Entries close 5pm, 31 July 2022.

To find out more about the Awards and to enter, visit NZ Biosecurity Awards.

Source:  Ministry for Primary Industries 

Latest M.bovis Technical Advisory Group report is released

The latest report from the independent Technical Advisory Group (TAG) for the Mycoplasma bovis (M. bovis) response shows New Zealand is on track to eradicate the disease.  

“The TAG report acknowledges the improvements to our work, which aim to lessen the impact on affected farmers, their whānau, workers and rural communities,” says M. bovis Programme Director Stuart Anderson.

“I know that farmers who have been impacted have found the process challenging. Their contribution has not gone unnoticed or unappreciated, and 4 years on since the disease was first detected, immense progress has been made towards eradication. We now have just 3 active confirmed infected farms, compared to 34 farms 2 years ago.” Continue reading