9 Dec 2021
Do you know what’s hiding in your pantry?
NSW Chief Plant Protection Officer Satendra Kumar is encouraging NSW residents to find out what’s lurking in their pantry while also helping to protect the state’s $20.9 billion primary industries sector, as part of the state’s first Pantry Blitz.
“NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) will run the biosecurity blitz, which aims to identify pest insects which could be introduced into NSW in a wide variety of ways before finding their way into the home,” he said.
“Unwanted insect pests can stowaway as hitchhikers on cargo including plastic beads, nuts and bolts, timber flooring, foodstuffs and white goods, and on rare occasions slip past detection at the Australian ports.”
“If they find their way here, a wide range of these insects would love to make a home in your pantry and can live very happily and often undetected in stored food items such as dried fruit, cereal and flour.”
With participating households sent a non-toxic glue trap to install in their pantry, Pantry Blitzers will be asked to take a photo and send a report at the end of each week of the program.
“The program will provide DPI with information that will be vital to our efforts to keep NSW free of devastating insect pests and you’ll be playing your part in protecting our state’s primary industries.”
“Australia is relatively isolated from the rest of the world which allows us a certain amount of freedom from damaging pests and diseases found in other countries, but as trade and travel increase, so does the likelihood of exotic pests arriving.”
The Pantry Blitz will begin in January 2022 and will see experts at DPI analyse each report, identify any pests found and provide information on the results straight to your device.
After Pantry Blitz concludes, the community’s findings will be collated and published online.
To register for Pantry Blitz visit www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/pantryblitz and a trap and instructions will be posted to you.
Media contact: 02 6391 3686