[17 September/Stuff]

Taxpayers had spent $6 million on defending the kiwifruit claim case. It was the most expensive primary sector court case on record. Growers had claimed the Ministry for Primary Industries were negligent in allowing the Psa disease into the country in 2010 and are claiming more than $450 million in compensation. MPI wanted to clarity the scope for government regulators to be sued in negligence in appealing the original judgement. The claimants filed a cross-appeal that Seeka was owed a duty of care, and that MPI was negligent in failing to inspect a shipment of kiwifruit plant material infected with Psa from China. Kiwifruit Claim Chairman, John Cameron, would not disclose how much they had spent on the case, but said it was less than the Crown’s costs. The case had already set the record for being the most expensive primary sector trial, and had the potential of reaching the supreme court.