The Pacific Plant Biosecurity Partnership (PPBP)


Since our last update the program has finished its first phase and is now being co-funded by the Australian Department of Agriculture and Water Resources (DAWR) and The Crawford Fund in addition to the main funding provided by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR).

All Fellows of the partnership have completed their fives weeks of Australian placements as part of the first phase of the 2 year program. These five weeks consisted of:


A Biosecurity training and market access simulations designed and run by Dr. Sabine Perrone of BioSecurity and AgriSystems Protection (BSASP) and Mr. Bill Magee


Placements in Australian host organisations that addressed the specific needs identified by the National Plant Protection Organisations and the individual Fellows. This included placements with Plant Health Australia; New South Wales Department of Primary Industries; Department of Agriculture and Water Resources; Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries; Victorian Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions; Murdoch University; Northern Territory Department of Primary Industries and Resources; CSIRO; AusVeg and AgriBio


A communication master class designed and run by The Crawford Fund and Econnect. This course design focuses on improving plant biosecurity professional’s ability to communicate and advocate for plant biosecurity measures to a broad range of stakeholders.

To learn more about the program click here

PHAMA Transition

The PHAMA program has had a very successful 7 and a half years, the impact report which dives into the affects on specific commodities and countries can be found here. Being found still relevant and effective, the PHAMA program’s design has been refined to best fit the current needs in the Pacific and will be launching its next phase “PHAMA Plus” this October. To ensure a smooth transition the PHAMA team has been consulting with their many stakeholders to let them know what to expect in the change in design with preliminary feedback being overwhelmingly positive, the design document can be found here. These consultations provided the amazing opportunity for a workshop in a cave in Tonga!

Mihaela Balan and Rob Duthie workshop in Tongan cave.

Mihaela Balan and Rob Duthie workshop in Tongan cave.

ACIAR Pacific Plant Biosecurity Capacity Building Program

Kalang have been contracted by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) to design and implement a Pacific Plant Biosecurity Capacity Building Program in consultation with stakeholders. This program builds on ACIAR's successful Australia-Africa Plant Biosecurity Partnership (AAPBP) and will focus initially on ACIAR's 8 target Pacific Island Countries (PICs): Fiji, Kiribati, PNG, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu. Discussions are currently underway for co-financing with potential to include more PICs and more participants from each PIC over the next 2 years of the program. If you're interested in finding out more please don't hesitate to contact us.


PHAMA Plus Design

The Kalang team have been closely associated with DFAT's flagship aid-for-trade program, PHAMA, since its beginning, playing crucial roles in design and implementation. The latest phase of the PHAMA program is coming to a close this October with a transition period in September to ready stakeholders for a slight change in focus under the PHAMA Plus program. Kalang was happy to be included in the small design team for PHAMA Plus and very much looking forward to the opportunities this new program brings. You can see the PHAMA Plus Investment Design Document and the changes in the new program here

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Opportunities to Improve Trade Pathways for Selected Mango Markets

China represents an important export market for all of the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) partner countries. With its emerging middle class and relatively low consumption base, on a per capita basis, it is viewed as having substantial growth potential. Being a phytosanitary market, direct access to the Chinese market has historically been difficult, inconsistent and expensive. Some countries simply are not able to meet the requirements. Exporters and importers have often opted for the informal channels to access this growing market. This, however, is not a sustainable approach for the long-term development of the Chinese market and recent legislative changes are indicating that a much harder line approach is going to be taken to closing this trade.

Kalang has been contracted to assist in a study that is to gain an in-depth understanding of the market entry issues surrounding the target markets of mainland China and Hong Kong, and to provide an understanding for recommendations that will prioritise and strategise future research and development activities.

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Handicrafts Training Workshops

As part of the PHAMA program, Kalang and PHAMA staff presented workshops in PNG and the Solomon Islands for the benefit of local biosecurity authorities, vendors and producers. Country specific vendor guides were distributed and discussed in detail including role play for typical scenarios involving tourists. Feedback was overwhelmingly positive with local groups already forming collectives to further distribute the knowledge and experience.

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SPS Regional Facility for PICTs

Kalang have been contracted by the Standards and Trade Development Facility (STDF) to design a project proposal for a Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Regional Facility for all Pacific Island Countries and Territories. This project has a very broad scope with potential to have large long term benefits for the entire region. For more information visit our 'Active Programs' tab, or have a look at the project's Facebook page.

We have begun consultations in Fiji and are calling out for anybody who wishes to be involved to make contact via email, Facebook or through this website. We have released a short online survey and would very much appreciate anyone who is interested in this project to take part in it, the survey can be found here: SPS Regional Facility for PICTs Survey

Seen below is Patrick presenting at the 2017 IPPC Workshop in Nadi and presenting at a Market Access Working Group meeting in Suva.




Launched: Tasmania Fruit Fly PFA Strategy for the Future

Kalang recently reviewed Tasmania's Fruit Fly strategy and completed a comprehensive report making recommendations to keep Tasmania fruit fly free into the future. The strategy was successfully launched by Minister Jeremy Rockliff on June 29. You can find excerpts from the report here: Biosecurity Tasmania. Jeremy Rockliff's interview on the topic can be listened to here: ABC Radio. Pictured below is Rob Duthie speaking at Fruit Growers Tasmania Annual Conference.

Pacific Island arts and crafts – quarantine awareness

Kalang is working with multi media service providers, artisans and relevant stakeholders in PNG, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu to increase the sale of arts and crafts to tourists through increased quarantine awareness associated with locally produced arts and crafts. The project will use video, pamphlets and vendor guides to provide information on quarantine issues.

The project is part of the PHAMA program funded by Australian Government and managed by AECOM.

ACIAR Regional Mango Workshop Program

Meeting with partner country researchers in Bangkok for a 3 day workshop, Kalang director Rob Duthie presented and discussed issues of biosecurity and market access with regional mango producing countries. Import and export protocols, market constraints, key quarantine pests of mangoes, future R&D and collaborative opportunities to increase regional mango trade were areas for discussion. The project is funded by ACIAR and managed by Griffith University, Qld Australia.


Review of Australian fruit fly free area

Kalang conducted a review of the Greater Sunraysia fruit fly free horticultural production area, at the request of the Victorian Government in early 2016. The Greater Sunraysia area is a major production area for Australian citrus, grapes and stonefruit. Fruit fly pest free area status had recently been revoked and Kalang worked with the Victorian state government and key industry stakeholders to develop future fruit fly management strategies.  

Swan Hill

PNG joins the PHAMA program

PNG joined the PHAMA program in late 2015. Australian and NZ aid agencies agreed to include PNG within the PHAMA program based upon recommendations provided by the Kalang Director under contract to URS. The program will work with PNG competent authorities, commodity boards, other aid programs, exporters and farmers to gain new markets, improve existing markets and increase the economic prosperity of the PNG people.

PNG scoping mission - PHAMA program

Kalang Director, contracted by URS, conducted a scoping mission to meet with PNG government and industry officials to discuss inclusion of PNG within the Pacific Horticultural and Agricultural Market Access (PHAMA) program. There was considerable interest from PNG public and private sector to build on existing exports of agricultural products with the assistance of the program.

Risk based approach to quarantine - Indonesian workshops

Dr Ruth Frampton and Kalang Director facilitated workshops with Indonesian quarantine managers to examine strategies for the continued development and enhancement of risk based approaches to quarantine. The workshops were funded by NZ aid and Landcare Research NZ as part of a larger Indonesia and NZ quarantine and agriculture improvements project.

PHAMA Phase 1 review completed

An independent review of the AusAID funded Pacific Horticulture and Agriculture Market Access (PHAMA) program has been completed. As subcontractor to the Managing Contractor URS, Kalang has managed and provided technical delivery of phase 1 of the program. The review has endorsed the PHAMA model and the technical delivery of the program by Kalang. The review has also recommended a second 4 year phase of the program commencing July 1 2013. A copy of the review is available for download here.

Kalang Director independent advisor to IAEA research program

Kalang Director Rob Duthie, attended a Research Coordination Meeting (RCM) of an ongoing International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Pest Control Unit Coordinated Research Project (CRP) as a member of an independent advisory panel. The CRP has been seeking to resolve the cryptic species complexes of Bactrocera dorsalisAnastrepha fracterculus and Ceratitis rosa Tephritid pest fruit fly species complexes. The results of several years of international research examining biochemical, genetic, taxonomic, behavioural and ecological research was presented and considered CRP members and the independent panel. Kalang provided  trade and market access related advice and will continue as an independent advisor to the CRP.

Review of Pakistan mango exports

Kalang has successfully conducted a review of the phytosanitary components of the Pakistan mango export industry. The work was funded by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) and conducted in cooperation with ACIAR and Pakistan government authorities. Recommendations for improved phytosanitary management of export pathways was provided to government and industry officials. 

ACIAR funded taro research program underway

The Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) is funding a collaborative research project between Kalang, the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), the Fiji Ministry of Agriculture (MOA), Biosecurity Authority Fiji (BAF) and the Samoan Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF). Kalang is working with governments, SPC and industry to improve export quality of taro and reduce quarantine intervention of exported product. Program details here