Biosecurity and Trade

Biosecurity is a strategic and integrated approach to analyzing and managing relevant risks to human, animal and plant life and health and associated risks to the environment. Interest in biosecurity has risen considerably over the last decade in parallel with increasing trade in food, plant and animal products, more international travel, new outbreaks of transboundary disease affecting animals, plants and people, heightened awareness of biological diversity and greater attention to the environment and the impact of agriculture on environmental sustainability.

Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTSs) need to position themselves to take advantage of trading opportunities, while protecting their natural resource base from potential risks.
SPC assists Fiji in efforts to manage the termite problem
Thursday, 05 August 2010 09:56

‘Operation Kadivuka’ was officially launched on May 2010 at Nadi Airport by the Minister for Primary Industries, Hon Joketani Cokanasiga. The launching also included the declaration of the boundary of the extent of spread of the termite, Coptotermes gestroi (Asian subterranean termite) and the gazetting of more than one hundred personnel from different government ministries, including members of the disciplined forces as temporary biosecurity officers to help Biosecurity Authority of the Fiji islands (BAFI) contain and manage the spread of the termite, first detected in late 2009 within the Lautoka area. The termite is known to have infested and damaged houses, trees, timber as well as root crops.

SPC technical assistance was also officially requested to help Fiji BAFI manage the termite problem.

SPC Biosecurity has been instrumental in the operation with the funding of the services of two Australian termite specialists. Dr Brenton Peters carried out training and demonstrations on the use of Termidor dust powder which is now currently being used to dust and treat the termites. Other SPC assistance worth FD$20,000 include equipment, publications, basic wood technology training, delimiting survey, etc.

Subsequent technical trainings are being planned. Houses are continually being surveyed and confirmed infested homes including trees are treated and subsequent monitoring after four weeks to assess the efficacy of the treatment.

SPC Biosecurity will continue to assist the Kadivuka team and collate response practices and lessons learnt to prepare for similar termite infestations in other Pacific islands.

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