Sudden Oak Death Virus

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 2:30 pm on 6th January 2004.

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Photo of Lord Whitty Lord Whitty Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) (Food, Farming and Sustainable Energy) 2:30 pm, 6th January 2004

My Lords, plants imported from third countries must have a health certificate. Hosts of the fungus, Phytophthora ramorum, must come from disease-free areas or from nurseries that are regularly inspected and found clear. Within the EU, checks at nurseries allow issue of passports for rhododendrons and viburnums, which are the plants most often infected. Our monitoring inspections are now being stepped up, and we continue to destroy plants that are infected or do not have the right documentation.