In a boost for Victorian beekeepers, restrictions are easing on state borders, allowing hives to be transported from New South Wales.
- Beekeepers with Victorian registered hives can now apply for a permit to move their hives from NSW to Victoria
- It comes after months of restrictions due to the spread of varroa mite
- Authorities say there now national acceptance that the state of NSW is free from the pest
From Monday, beekeepers with Victorian registered hives can apply for a permit to move their hives from NSW into Victoria.
It comes as a huge relief for Victorian beekeepers, with some having lost thousands of dollars’ worth of contracts due to being unable to move their interstate hives.
New South Wales beekeepers have also welcomed the move.
The varroa mite was first detected at the Port of Newcastle in June last year, and a total of 107 premises have been infected.
In 2022, states and territories banned the entry of bees, hives and products, including honey, from anywhere in NSW to curb the spread of the mite.
Acting Chief Plant Health Officer Stephen Dibley says there is now national acceptance that the state of NSW is free from the pest, apart from those areas within a 25 km radius of an infected hive.
He said the decision had been made following extensive surveillance.
“We can now begin assessing permit applications to move hives from NSW into Victoria that were unable to cross the border prior to the national acceptance of area freedom in NSW’s blue zone,” Dr Dibley said.
“Initially, only Victorian registered hives in the blue zone that can demonstrate compliance with testing and traceability requirements will be able to be moved.”
In the coming weeks, non-Victorian registered hives will also be able to apply for a permit to enter Victoria.
“While hives in the blue zone are of low risk, Victoria is maintaining a cautious and staged approach to welcoming hives from NSW to ensure that biosecurity risks can be appropriately managed,” Dr Dibley said.
“There will also be an increased testing regime required for all hives moving into Victoria.”
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