The HoS reports:
Horticulture NZ chief executive Peter Silcock says irradiated food is a concern for consumers.
“The primary concern is what impact has radiation had on the product and what impact will it have on my body when I eat it.”
No it isn’t a concern. What is concerning is Horticulture NZ trying to use science as a cover for protectionism.
Australian sterilisation and decontamination company Steritech said it would treat New Zealand consignments.
“Tomatoes and capsicums will be treated, in accordance with specified standards which produce food that is safe and nutritious, in Steritech’s Narangba facility in Queensland,” said chief executive Murray Lynch. Irradiation was a safe, non-invasive alternative to methyl bromide and other chemicals used post-harvest, he said. Some irradiated tropical Australian fruit, including mango, papaya and lychees, is already sold in New Zealand.
I’m going to make it a point of principle to buy Australian tomatoes, so as to not reward NZ growers for their scare-mongering.
They are using the same tactics Australian orchardists used to block NZ apples for scores of years. We fought against that and should be better than that.
NZ and Australian tomatoes should compete on taste, quality and price. Not on scare-mongering.