In 1921 fireblight disease was found on New Zealand apples, and Australia banned the importation of pipfruit from New Zealand. This was one of a number of restrictions which hampered New Zealand exports across the Tasman. Later studies showed that no commercially traded apples carried the disease and there were no risk of New Zealand imports infecting Australian apples. From 1986 New Zealand tried to have the ban lifted. Australia consistently opposed this, and these New Zealand apple growers are protesting outside Parliament in June 2005. New Zealand appealed to the World Trade Organization, which in 2010 ruled that the restrictions were unscientific and broke international trading rules. In February 2011 Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced that her country would henceforth accept New Zealand apples.
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Alexander Turnbull Library
Photograph by Dylan Owen
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