May 2022

Pepino Mosaic Virus (PepMV) 2022

Pepino Mosaic Virus (PepMV) 2022
A Reminder to Be Vigilant with Hygiene Measures as We Get Closer Winter

As the light levels decrease it is incredibly important to understand how to recognise and limit the spread of PepMV, detected last year, this winter. In the supermarkets, last year, the blotches on the fruit, caused by the virus, were very visible to the consumer, so we need to do all we can to limit the impact of the virus this year.

Light levels are currently good for the start of May – this will change, it will get dark, cold and this is when we need to mindful of what we can do to limit the impact. Best case scenario is that it isn’t an issue this year, on the other side worst case is that it has spread, and fruit quality is affected. I have been pleasantly surprised with the reports over the summer, this gives me optimism we may have dodged full impact. That, however, is not a reason for complacency.

This is a reminder and plea to please be vigilant with hygiene measures. Prevention is all we have as there is currently no ‘cure,’ so it is best to avoid infection in the first instance. Remain careful who you let into your property and minimise contact. Ensure if Consultants and Seed Representatives make site visits that appropriate PPE is in use. It is a highly transferrable disease, so a full PPE suit is essential, as are gloves and shoe covers. A spray bottle, filled with disinfectant to spray on shoes, is also helpful when entering and leaving properties.

It is important growers interact with consultants and seed representatives. As in the last editions articles, seed representatives are important to inform growers of new material and provide advice on their cultivars.

If growers do suspect they have PepMV then it is important to test. If you do have the virus, then containing it is difficult, but it will be beneficial as you can then restrict your movements to other growers’ properties. Not sure from where to get tests? Please contact Tomatoes NZ for more information. https://www.tomatoesnz.co.nz/hot-topics/pepino-mosaic-virus/


These are the two initial visual signs that alert growers to potential PepMV

  • Thistle like looking leaf
  • Blotchy fruit

If you see these indicators, then please call me, or contact TomatoesNZ.

‘TomatoesNZ are currently sending out testing kits to any grower who would like the assurance of testing plant samples. The kit and the testing is free and the results are passed on to the grower confidentially. Contact Dinah Dinah.cohen@hort.co.nz if you’d like a test sent to you’

Article written and compiled by Stefan Vogrincic

All Article’s checked and edited by Marie Vogrincic

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