Haul of mangoes seized at airport

18:59, Feb 11 2013
SEIZED: Two boxes of Australian mangoes were confiscated by biosecurity staff in Auckland.

Border staff at Auckland Airport have made one of their largest seizures from a passenger after a woman attempted to bring two cartons of fresh mangoes in from Australia.

The woman, a visitor to New Zealand last week, declared the fruit on entry and the 28 mangoes were confiscated by the Ministry of Primary Industries biosecurity staff at airport customs.

Steve Gay, from the Ministry of Primary Industries, said Brisbane mangoes were known carriers of fruit fly which could devastate New Zealand's fruit industry.

"If fruit fly got established in NZ it would ruin our fruit exports. It is in excess of a billion dollar export industry," he said.

Gay said the woman had been told by the airline she had travelled with that she was allowed to
bring the fruit to New Zealand. She would not be prosecuted or fined because she had declared the fruit.

"She did everything right, even down to trying to ascertain the import status," Gay said.


Auckland Now