The judge found that the MPI directions, issued under s116 of the Biosecurity Act were unlawful and has directed MPI to reconsider.
The judgment encourages MPI to work with industry to develop and agree a more appropriate set of directions that address their key biosecurity concerns.
The industry members have always been willing to undertake meaningful dialogue with MPI in order to achieve an appropriate outcome, and now look forward to an improved level of engagement from MPI.
Whilst discussions are underway, the interim order applies for a further five days (see note below).
Kerry Sixtus of Pattullo’s Nurseries said, “We are encouraged by the High Court judgment and will move forward to engage with MPI as quickly as possible in order to achieve a suitable position that accommodates the needs of both parties.
“The group has always believed that MPI should have taken a more considered approach to this issue from day one, rather than a blanket seizure of all plant material.
“We have now proven, and the High Court Judge has recognised, that MPI was using a sledge hammer to crack a nut.
“This now provides us with the opportunity to define a course of action for the different varieties and for the plants at different stages of growth.
“This has been a costly distraction for us during an incredibly busy time of year, but we are willing to move forward and salvage what we can from this bureaucratic mess,” added Kerry.