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Grapevine pinot gris virus detected in SA and NSW (August 2017)

Grapevine pinot gris virus (GPGV) has been detected in South Australia and NSW. The virus has not been detected in Tasmania to date.


This virus occurs in many wine and table grape growing regions, including Europe (where it was first categorised in 2012), Asia and North America, which suggests that the virus has been around, undiscovered, for a considerable time.

 

Symptoms occur in spring and include leaf mottling and deformation. Infected plants may show declined yields indicating that the virus can be a significant plant health concern in some varieties, although some infected plants may show no visible symptoms.  The virus has alternate hosts, such as the weed commonly known as Fat-hen, which is widely naturalised throughout large parts of Australia, including Tasmania.


Measures have been taken at the identified sites to contain the virus, which spreads through movement and exchange of infected propagation material, and possibly by some species of mites.  Targeted surveillance in the affected states will take place in spring when conditions are favourable to assess the status of the virus.


Routine screening for this virus at Australian borders began in the spring of 2015. It is possible that the virus has been present in Australia for a while with the recent detections attributed to improvements in testing technologies, such as deep sequencing. There is now a diagnostic protocol for the virus. 

 

The Australian Consultative Committee on Emergency Plant Pests (CCEPP), which is the national technical body for coordinating national responses to emergency plant pest incursions, ​has met to discuss this incident nationally and will continue to meet as further surveillance and tracing information becomes available.  

 

Biosecurity Tasmania is monitoring the situation very closely and is a participant on the national technical committee.


Until more is known about the situation, no states, including Tasmania, have implemented new import requirements.  Virus certification schemes are the best way to ensure propagation material is clean. Further information on GPGV will be provided as new details are obtained, and on completion of the targeted national surveillance program in spring 2017. 


What to do if you think you have found Grapevine pinot gris virus


More information about GPGV including symptoms, sampling, testing and actions following a positive test can be found in the GPGV fact sheet. 

 

Biosecurity Tasmania urges all grape producers to be vigilant for any signs of the virus and if they have any concerns they should call the emergency plant disease hotline on 1800 084 881.