South Auckland suburb of Otara is currently under a Controlled Area Notice to manage the fruit fly that has been found on Tuesday, February 19.

This restricts the movement of certain fruits and vegetables out of the Controlled Area to help prevent the spread of any fruit flies if there are more than one.

Fruit flies are a massive threat to New Zealand’s $5.5 billion horticulture industry, and there have been two cases of fruit flies in last week in Auckland.

The government, Biosecurity NZ, the Council and the local MP of Otara region, Minister Jenny Salesa are working in full-swing to educate the local communities about how to work together in minimising the impact of fruit-fly detection.

Addressing a media stand-up this morning local MP Minister Salesa said, “I plan to help later today in door knocking [in spreading the message] engaging with local ethnic media and communities to ensure that the message gets out in their languages.”

A large field operation is underway in the Auckland suburb of Otara following the discovery of a single male Facialis fruit fly in a surveillance trap in the area. 

Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) director general Ray Smith says our main focus right now is to determine if the fly is a solitary find, or if it is part of a breeding population in the area.

Movement restrictions on fruits and vegetables in the Controlled Area

In summary, the restrictions on moving fruit and vegetables are:

  • If you live in Zone A (refer to map):

No whole fruit or vegetables (except leafy and root vegetables like taro, lettuce, cabbage, bok choy, rhubarb, broccoli, brussels sprouts, carrots, parsnips, potatoes, kumara, celery, onions, spring onions) can be taken out of Zone A. In addition, no fruit or vegetable waste (such as fruit skins and cores/stones, peelings and the like ) or garden waste (such as prunings from fruit trees or vegetable garden cuttings) can go out of the area. The fruit or vegetables should either be disposed of in a home in-sink disposal unit or put into specially supplied Biosecurity New Zealand bins.

  • If you live in Zone B (refer to map):

You must not move homegrown fruit and vegetables out of the Controlled Area. In other words, produce grown inside the Controlled Area cannot be moved out of it. You are free to move commercially-purchased fruit and vegetables (such as fruit and vegetables bought at the supermarket) out of the area. Homegrown produce waste and garden waste needs to be disposed of in Biosecurity New Zealand bins.

If in doubt, don't take it out.