Stink raised over bugs found on boat

Shepparton News - Country News - - WOMEN IN AG FORUM -

A boat car­ry­ing cars and ma­chin­ery has been sent home be­cause bugs on board could have dec­i­mated Aus­tralia’s $12 bil­lion hor­ti­cul­tural in­dus­try.

The Tri­umph, owned by Ar­ma­cup, had come through mul­ti­ple ports and will now go back to China.

Fed­eral Agri­cul­ture Min­is­ter David Lit­tleproud said Aus­tralia would never com­pro­mise on keep­ing its farm sec­tor safe.

‘‘Depart­ment of Agri­cul­ture in­spec­tions found more than a hun­dred brown mar­morated stink bugs and other bugs on the Tri­umph, which in­di­cates a live pop­u­la­tion on the boat,’’ Mr Lit­tleproud said.

‘‘These bugs eat ev­ery­thing from toma­toes to ap­ples and broc­coli to beans.

‘‘They also gather in peo­ple’s houses and stink to high heaven.

‘‘Aus­tralia is ex­tremely lucky to be rel­a­tively iso­lated by sea, which helps us keep pests and dis­eases out.

‘‘We sell our pro­duce for pre­mium prices over­seas be­cause it’s clean and green — we have very few pests and dis­eases.’’

The bug comes from Asia and is now wreak­ing havoc in parts of Europe.

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