This investment is tasked with supporting the adoption of ‘next generation sequencing’ in the screening of imported horticultural plant material in post-entry quarantine facilities.
The technology has the potential to allow plants to move through the quarantine process much more quickly – allowing industry speedier access to new genetic stocks.
This project is a multi-industry strategic levy investment in the Hort Innovation Citrus, Nursery, Potato – Fresh, Potato – Processing, Raspberry & Blackberry and Table Grape Funds.
Currently, new plant material entering Australia can spend up to three years in post-entry quarantine facilities undergoing pathogen testing. Next generation sequencing offers a fast, reliable and cost-effective method to identify all known plant pathogens in a single test.
Previous research has demonstrated the approach’s success and efficiency in testing for viruses and viroids in imported plants, with next generation sequencing subsequently being adopted in the testing of imported ornamental grasses. This investment will provide the evidence and protocols needed for the technology to be adopted for further plant commodities, including horticulture crops.