In 2013 a new strain of banana freckle was found in the NT that infects a wide range of banana varieties. Banana freckle will have a serious impact on commercial banana production and backyard plants if it becomes established in Australia.
The Territory only has a limited number of heavily infected sites. Red zones have been declared where banana freckle has been found. The green zone is the area that has no banana freckle.
We can eradicate banana freckle, but we need to act now before it becomes more established, starts to cause more damage and spreads more broadly across the Territory and Australia.
Banana freckle cannot be eradicated by fungicides, even when applied very frequently. The only way to eradicate banana freckle is to destroy all of the banana plants in the red zones, as the disease can only survive on live banana plants.
A national biosecurity response is underway to eradicate banana freckle from the Territory and Australia. This involves destroying all banana plants from the six red zones by April 2015.
No banana plants or fruit are taken out of the red zones to avoid spreading the disease. During the Eradication Program no banana plants or fruit can be moved out of the Northern Territory.
The Banana Freckle field team is assisting with the destruction of banana plants in the following areas from January 23 until February 7 (approximately):
Anyone who does not have any banana plants, or who has already destroyed their banana plants, can notify the Banana Freckle Hotline on 1800 771 163.
Green Zone Surveillance Continues
Surveillance is being conducted in green zones around the Northern Territory to identify properties with bananas and to check for the presence of Banana Freckle - to ensure this serious plant disease does not spread outside Red Zones. [read more]
Ramingining leading the fight against Banana Freckle
Ramingining will soon become the second of six Red Zones in the Northern Territory to destroy all banana plants as part of the National Banana Freckle Eradication Program. [read more]
Saturday field team bookings start
To meet the target of complete destruction of banana plants in Red Zones by April 2015 the Banana Freckle Eradication Program is taking bookings for field teams to visit homes on Saturdays. [read more]