FAQs related to National Pest Programmes

How often is the National Pest Plant Accord list updated?

Anyone can submit proposals for plants to be added or removed from the Accord list at any time. Proposals will be held by the Ministry for Primary Industries until there are enough to justify a review, unless there is some urgency involved with adding or removing the proposed species.

What is the National Pest Plant Accord?

The National Pest Plant Accord (the Accord), developed in 2001, is a cooperative agreement between the Nursery and Garden Industry Association, regional councils and government departments with biosecurity responsibilities.

It identifies plants that are unwanted organisms under the Biosecurity Act 1993. These plants cannot be sold, propagated or distributed in New Zealand.

The Accord is not a pest management strategy. It is a non-statutory agreement between member parties. The process followed to establish and review the Accord is very different and completely separate from processes to establish and review pest management strategies.

I sell plants that NPPA has flagged for banning, will I get compensation for lost sales?

There is no compensation under the Biosecurity Act for people who lose sales of a plant on the Accord. However the parties will be working with those affected to minimise losses.

How can I be kept informed of what’s going on with the National Pest Plant Accord?

The Ministry for Primary Industries maintains a consultative list, who are provided with regular updates and are sent any consultation material. You can be added to the consultative list by emailing your contact details to nppa@mpi.govt.nz

More information about the National Pest Plant Accord is available on the Ministry for Primary Industries Biosecurity website www.biosecurity.govt.nz/NPPA.

How is the public and industry involved in changes to the National Pest Plant Accord list?

The Ministry for Primary Industries seeks public submissions on the risk assessments carried out by the Technical Advisory Group (TAG). The Accord Steering Group (made up of representatives from the Ministry for Primary Industries, the Nursery and Garden Industry Association, regional councils and the Department of Conservation) considers the submissions when it decides on any changes to the Accord list. The Steering Group also works with industry to implement any changes to the Accord list.

Will all species being considered be banned?

No, not all species will be included on the Accord.

When will a ban come into effect on NPPA listed species?

Technically, a ban comes into effect when the plant is determined to be an unwanted organism by the Chief Technical Officer but regional councils do not enforce the ban for the first six months, to ensure that all outlets are aware the plant is banned.

Who decides which plants will be included on the Accord?

The Steering Group of the Accord decides which species are included on the Accord.

Who is on the Steering Group for NPPA?

The Steering Group is the decision-making body and has oversight for the Accord. It comprises representatives from the Ministry for Primary Industries, the Nursery and Garden Industry Association, regional councils and the Department of Conservation.

How is it decided which plants will be proposed to be banned?

When making its decision, the Accord Steering Group will consider TAG’s advice, the regulatory impacts and the submissions received. Other criteria the Steering Group use to make their decision include:

  • whether the species is present in New Zealand
  • whether it is widespread throughout the country
  • and whether the Accord will be an effective mechanism to reduce the impacts of the species.
I have plants in my garden which are on the Accord or being considered for the Accord, will I have to pull them out?

No, you won’t have to pull them out. It is legal to have a plant that is on the Accord list, but it is illegal to sell, propagate or spread it. The agencies and industry groups involved in implementing the Accord work together to make sure that home gardeners receive good information, including the reasons plants have been included on the Accord (ie their environmental impacts).

I sell plants that have been included on the National Pest Plant Accord, what does this mean for me?

When a new species is added, the Steering Group members discuss options to minimise or mitigate impacts of the ban. At the least there will be a six month phase out period where regional councils will advise outlets of the ban. Some species, if there is an acceptable level of risk, will be notified as being intended to be included in the Accord from a certain date. These species will not be announced to the public, but will give outlets a chance to minimise losses of sales.