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The Ministry of Agriculture is in the process of finalizing paper work before certifying food from Tonga to be accepted in New Zealand.

Radio & TV Tonga, Nuku’alofa, 2/11/2018

Last Month the Minister of Agriculture – Semisi Fakahau signed a MOU with the head of the Biosecurity of New Zealand for the quarantine certification of foods that passengers from Tonga take to New Zealand.

The agreement allows the staff from the Ministry to check the food before it goes to NZ to ensure it is biosecurity safe, particularly the ‘umu, coconuts and fish .

The CEO of MAFF Dr Viliami Manu says two Tongan staff from the Zealand’s Ministry of Primary Industry will be in Nuku’alofa to train the staff from the Ministry specifically assigned to certify the foods before its being sent to New Zealand.

Under the MOU, New Zealand will accept Tonga’s certification meaning when passengers arrive with the ‘umu packages with the note that has been certified, New Zealand officials wouldn’t recheck it.

The food packages from Tonga are usually verified upon arrival.

The initiative will be effective on the 19th of this month.

© Radio and Television Tonga News