HTA calls for sweet chestnut import ban

The HTA is advocating a ban on the import of sweet chestnut trees into Britain in a bid to control the spread of a fungal disease.

The disease, caused by the fungus Cryphonectria parasitica has already affected two sites in the UK. So far, 180 trees have been destroyed on sites in Warwickshire and Essex, following the importation of infected trees from France in 2011.

With the potential increase in planting of sweet chestnut as an alternative to ash in woodlands, the HTA supports a ban on imports as this could present an unnecessary risk to UK woodland already under stress from chalara.

HTA director of business development Tim Briercliffe said: "UK growers take these issues very seriously as we evidenced when we called for a ban in ash imports in 2009 and called for a ban on Plane imports at the end of 2012."

He added: "The situation is different to Chalara in that the disease is controlled within Europe through plant passporting and the UK is a ‘protected zone’.  However, despite these controls, the disease has been found in the UK in recent years.  The disease does not appear as aggressive as Chalara, but in light of the fact that demand for sweet chestnut is likely to increase, we would support an import ban to help prevent the disease spreading further."

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Read These Next

Business planning - cash-flow management

Business planning - cash-flow management

Wider market volatility can have a big impact on cash flow but there are ways to avoid problems, Neville Stein explains.

Chainsaws - Improving performance

Chainsaws - Improving performance

Battery chainsaws offer many advantages while innovative technology shelps the latest petrol models meet emissions standards, writes Sally Drury.

Chainsaws tested and reviewed: battery v petrol

Chainsaws tested and reviewed: battery v petrol

How do the latest battery models shape up against new petrol chainsaws when tested at Bridgwater College? Sally Drury reports.

Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Horticulture Week Custodian Awards

Jeremy Barrell On...

Jeremy Barrell

Tree consultant Jeremy Barrell reflects on the big issues in arboriculture.

Products & Kit Resources