Implementing on-farm biosecurity
The key to good on-farm biosecurity is to reduce the introduction of foreign soil and plant material into your orchard to the lowest practicable level, and to maintain a good level of vigilance through regular monitoring and accurate record keeping. The key areas you will need to look at are:
- fencing, signage and access roads
- vehicle, machinery and equipment movements
- people management; including staff, contractors and tourists
- production practices
- animal management.
Fencing, signage and access roads
Orchards should have secure external fencing with appropriate signage and gates, that should, in most instances, be kept closed. Additional internal fences may be required if there are multiple blocks on the farm, particularly if they have differing pest status. Biosecurity signs provide an obvious reminder to all those entering the orchard of the entry restrictions and whom to contact/report to for permission to enter. A simple biosecurity sign is available for purchase, or a template downloadable for printing yourself, via the Farm Biosecurity website.
Access roads to sheds, workshops, tourism facilities and carparks should be as short as possible, ideally constructed of a hardstand material, and located as far away from the truffle orchard as practicable. Ensure any water run-off is directed away from the truffle orchard and water storage facilities that will be used within the orchard. Internal access roads to the truffle orchard should be restricted to required orchard activities only.