As we relayed to you all in May this year, the Clean Plant Center Northwest has been working through the discovery of virus contamination in seedling rootstocks used by the program for the last several decades. Earlier this year we identified and repeatedly re-tested promising public rootstock lines and sent them to a commercial tissue culture propagator. We are happy to announce that we have received the first batch of replacement rootstocks this October and are able to resume thermotherapy on virus-infected plants in 2023.
However, this does leave us with over three hundred fruit tree accessions that require virus elimination, and until these plants clear the program, they will occupy a substantial proportion of the total greenhouse space we possess. We had asked stakeholders to consider removing accessions in May 2022, but fewer than anticipated did so, and the CPCNW remains over capacity for both imported and domestic proprietary fruit tree accessions.
Therefore, we must regrettably inform stakeholders that we are unable to accept any proprietary fruit tree accessions, either imported or domestic in origin, during 2023. The CPCNW will, however, bring in a set number of public fruit tree cultivars of importance to growers and producers to meet the National Clean Plant Network objectives. The grapevine and hop programs are unaffected and will operate as per normal.
We understand the disruption that this may cause to your business plans and will update you all on space availability as plants clear the program.