Be Prepared… Stink Bugs Are Back (2018/19 Season)
For those of you previously impacted by the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug season earlier this year, we regret to inform you that the BMSB threat to Australia has increased, along with the list of high risk commodities. Whilst this can prove challenging for importers we are here to help.
Download our guide to the stink bug season or read below for an overview of how to manage the restrictions ahead.
What is Stink Bug Season?
During the season from September to April stink bugs can arrive in Australia on cargo and in containers. The exotic pests provide a biosecurity risk to Australia, impacting agriculture and damaging fruit and vegetable crops across the nation. To protect against infestation, The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources has introduced stringent measures to protect our borders.
If you import from select countries across the Northern Hemisphere you will need to be prepared for the stink bug season. Failure to adhere to the outlined requirements can result in the destruction of your cargo.
What Countries are Affected?
The below countries have been identified as high risk. Any products imported from these countries during stink bug season will need to be treated accordingly:
USA, Italy, Germany, France, Russia, Greece, Hungary, Romania, Georgia and Japan* (*heightened vessel surveillance only)
What Products are Affected?
If your cargo originates from any of the above countries, and is not under the exempt category, your goods must be treated. There are three categories that your goods may come into.
High risk goods will require mandatory offshore treatment. These are defined as:
- Break bulk, including vehicles, machinery and equipment
- Bricks, tiles, ceramics, steel, stone, cement
- Goods likely to be stored in a manner that provides access for BMSB to over winter
Target risk goods will be subject to increased onshore intervention in Australia. These goods are as follows:
- Chemicals, chemical products, salt, minerals, fertilisers
- Wood pulp, printed matter, straw, paper, cardboard
- Plastics, wadding, tyres
The Exempt category covers:
- Fresh Produce (including nursery stock and plants)
- Live animals
- Food for human consumption (including beverages)
- Seeds for sowing
- Registered Pharmaceuticals
What Treatments are Required?
The proposed measures that will apply to goods manufactured in, or shipped from affected countries include:
- Mandatory offshore treatment for target high risk goods
- Treatment must be by an approved treatment provider supported by a BMSB Treatment Certificate
- Increased onshore intervention for target risk goods
- Export or destruction of target high risk goods requiring mandatory offshore treatment and arriving untreated, or treated by an unapproved treatment provider
Suitable treatments include:
- Sulfuryl fluoride fumigation
- Methyl bromide fumigation
- Heat treatment
What Can I Do to Reduce My Risk?
Work with your forwarder to identify the type of goods you are importing and whether they are exempt, high risk or target risk.
Check the origin of your goods.
Remember: Even if your goods are being exported from a non-risk country but were manufactured in an affected country, treatment will still be required.
If your goods are high risk start sourcing a suitable approved treatment provider from August 2018. Check The Department of Agriculture Website for a list of approved treatment providers.
Budget additional costs for your shipment in case your goods require treatment on arrival in Australia.
DO NOT ship high risk goods without a treatment certificate. In this case your goods can be completely destroyed upon arrival.
One Last Tip
Your forwarder will be able to guide you through stink bug season. Remember to check out the risk category of your goods prior to shipping. The more prepared you are prior to arranging your shipment the less impact the stink bug season will have on you.
Should you have any questions regarding this please contact your ICE team member on 1300 CARGO1.