Local News

Fruit Fly Outbreak Threatening SA's Agriculture Industry

640px-Ceratitis_capitata_mediterranean_fruit_fly.jpg

The fruit fly outbreak in Adelaide is threatening SA’s $1.3 billion horticulture industry.

There are several Mediterranean fruit fly (Ceratitis capitata) outbreaks occurring across metropolitan Adelaide with 250 suburbs currently in quarantine.

Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone said the outbreak is getting close to the Adelaide Hills.

"The outbreaks extend from Elizabeth all the way down to Cross Roads and across to Glenelg... from the coast all the way to the foothills," Minister Whetstone said.

“If you are living within one of the areas across Adelaide under quarantine restrictions, no matter where you are travelling within South Australia... do not pack any homegrown fresh fruit and vegetables with you.”

Biosecurity officers have been door-knocking, ensuring residents are aware of the risks and that they are using fruit rather than transporting it or letting it rot.

"We've got to be very vigilant about this because we have our commercial sector on the outskirts of these fruit fly outbreaks that are under serious threat, but  we would lose our market advantage and it would have a very significant  impact on the bottom line for the growers and to South Australia's fruit fly-free reputation," Mr Whetstone said.

Despite the latest community awareness campaign, 28 kilograms of prohibited material was seized during a recent random roadblock at Blanchetown.

For more information, including quarantine bin locations, food checker and details on current Mediterranean fruit fly outbreaks including a suburb checker visit www.pir.sa.gov.au/fruitfly

Public Domain photo of Mediterranean fruit fly by Scott Bauer, U.S. Department of Agriculture, WikiMedia