A Northern Territory politician has had his small banana plantation cut down and poisoned.
It’s all part of the NT Department of Primary Industry’s plan to eradicate the fungal disease known as Banana Freckle, which was discovered on Cavendish bananas a few months ago.
Quarantine staff have been moving through the Howard Springs area, near Darwin, to remove all banana plants within a one-kilometre radius.
Independent member for Nelson, Gerry Wood, watched with some sadness as his trees were removed from his rural block today.
“It’s a bit sad because I’d put a bit of effort into getting these bananas up to a reasonable height and, just as they were producing a bunch, I got word that I was in the one-kilometre eradication zone,” he said.
“So a bit sad, but this is about protecting Northern Territory commercial growers and Australia’s banana industry.
“You’ve got to look at the big picture and if this can help to make sure industry is not going to be crippled by this disease, then you’ve got to do it.”
Mr Wood has used a familiar song to help him deal with the loss of his bananas.
“Singing I can do, but I can’t do it as well as Harry Belafonte.
“When I stood in front of my bananas this morning, I suppose I could have sung this song,” he said.
Sad to say they’re on their way,
won’t be back for many a day,
my heart is down
my head is turning around
they buried my bananas
in the ground