The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) Season is a challenging period in the shipping industry, with the rise of the brown marmorated stink bug presenting a significant risk to cargo and biosecurity in Australia. From 1 September 2020 to 31 May 2021, strict anti-stink bug measures are in place targeting high-risk and target-risk goods manufactured in, or shipped from, target-risk countries.
If you are importing goods that fit within the category subject to the BMSB measures, you’ll need to either have your goods treated upon arrival (six-sided sealed containers only) or present a BMSB Treatment Certificate to customs authorities to demonstrate the goods have been treated at origin (Mandatory for open-top containers or breakbulk cargo).
If treated offshore, the certificate must be provided by an approved offshore BMSB treatment provider who has been registered with Australia’s Offshore BMSB Treatment Providers Scheme. If treated on arrival, a certificate must be provided by your locally approved treatment provider.
Why an MSB Treatment Certificate?
Stink bugs are known to severely damage plant species, fruit and vegetables. The purpose of the BMSB Treatment Certificate is to indicate to the Australian Border Force that your cargo has been treated. The stink bug is not commonly found in Australia, they tend to travel via ocean cargo presenting a biosecurity risk to importing nations. They do not present a threat to human health but they do significantly harm agriculture.
The Stink Bug Treatment Certificate will typically be a one-paged document, and include:
- The approved treatment provider’s letterhead, including a unique certificate number issued by the treatment provider;
- The provider’s unique Entity Identifier (AEI) number;
- A short description of the goods that were treated, including the quantity;
- A link to the official documents relating to the consignment (may include your commercial invoice or bill of lading);
- Details of the shipment including the country of origin, destination and the purchaser’s and supplier’s name and address;
- Details of the treatment regarding fumigation and ventilation, including the dates these processes occurred and where;
- Declarations that the cargo meet certain packaging requirements; and
- A declaration that the shipment meets treatment requirements.
Failure to consider the stink bug risk and the requirement to present a BMSB certificate means your goods will need to be treated by Australian authorities. Note, only six-sided sealed containers can be treated on arrival. If you are shipping open top containers or bulk cargo and goods arrive untreated, your shipment will be redirected for export. This can cause unnecessary cost and delays and, if your goods present a biosecurity risk, they may be seized.
In December last year, a cargo ship carrying over 3,000 cars and machinery was simply refused entry into Australia due to the presence of stink bugs. It is important, therefore, to carefully assess the BMSB risk in your supply chain.
BMSB Fumigation Certificate Sample
If you have any questions regarding the BMSB season or treatment certificate, do not hesitate to get in contact with our friendly team of experts for a tailored consultation.