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Costs associated with fire blight incursion management and predicted costs of future

Rodoni, B.C., Merriman, P.R., McKirdy, S.J. and Wittwer, G. (2006) Costs associated with fire blight incursion management and predicted costs of future. Acta Horticulturae (704). pp. 55-62.

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The Erwinia amylovora incursion in the Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne (RBGM) in autumn 1997 cost the Australian pome fruit and nursery industries an estimated A$20 million in lost revenue. The cost of the national orchard and urban surveys, eradication programs, diagnostics, and media management was estimated at A$2.2 million and involved some 250 people. As a result of the E. amylovora incursion in the RBGM, an imposition of interstate trade on the movement of host plants and related produce was enforced. These restrictions cost the Victorian pome fruit and nursery industries around A$7 million in lost sales and depressed prices. International trade was also suspended in some instances and the Tasmanian industry application for access to the Japanese apple market was delayed for two years and cost an estimated A$10 million in lost sales. Prior to and since the RBGM incursion a number of research projects have been commissioned, at a cost of A$0.5 million, to formulate detailed contingency plans and diagnostic protocols and improve awareness and Australia’s preparedness for the next E. amylovora incident. The economic impact of a fire blight outbreak in Australia’s largest pome fruit growing district (Goulburn Valley, Victoria) was calculated using a dynamic multi-regional computable general equilibrium program of Australia called TERM (The Enormous Regional Model) (Horridge et al., 2003). Two separate scenarios were considered. In the first scenario an outbreak with 30% yield losses is eradicated in five years and results in losses of A$260 million. In the second scenario an outbreak is not eradicated and pome fruit output in the Goulburn Valley declines by 50% for pears and 20% for apples and results in losses of A$870 million in net present value.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publisher: International Society for Horticultural Science
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