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West Australia’s potato farmers pin hopes on negative psyllid tests to regain market access

Related imagePotato farmers in West Australia (WA) could see Eastern States’ markets reopen in the near future which are still closed to WA following the tomato potato psyllid outbreak last year. Potato Growers Association of WA chief executive officer Simon Moltoni said the potato industry and State Government were working through the Transition to Management Plan, with the aim to reopen market access. “We still haven’t regained market access to the East coast,” Mr Moltoni said. “That’s been a major issue to our growers. During spring the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development undertook testing of psyllids, looking for the bacteria, Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum, which causes the damage to the crops. Mr Moltoni said those tests came back negative and if the autumn round of testing this March returned the same result, discussions could begin to reopen interstate markets. More