Khapra beetle actions for sea containers

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Khapra beetle actions for sea containers

The Department of Agriculture is introducing new offshore treatment requirements to address the risk of khapra beetle which is Australia’s number two National priority pest. Khapra beetles are hosted by a range of plant products and are also a hitchhiking pest in sea containers. The Khapra beetle is a highly invasive pest that poses a major threat to Australia’s grains industry.

Containers exported on or after 12 April 2021 that are Target Risk Containers must be treated offshore prior to the loading of the goods and must be accompanied by a valid treatment certificate or phytosanitary certificate.

Target Risk Container is defined as:

High Risk Plant Products are defined as:

ProductTariff item code
Rice (Oryza sativa)1209, 1006
Chickpeas (Cicer arietinum)1209, 0713, 1106
Cucurbit seed (Cucurbita, Cucumis, Citrullus spp.)1209, 1207
Cumin seed (Cuminum cyminum)1209, 0909
Safflower seed (Carthamus tinctorius)1209, 1207
Bean seed (Phaseolus spp.)1209, 0713, 1106
Soybean (Glycine max)1209, 1201
Mung beans, cowpeas (Vigna spp.)1209, 0713, 1106
Lentils (Lens culinaris)1209, 0713, 1106
Wheat (Triticum aestivum)1209, 1001, 1104, 1103, 1101
Coriander seed (Coriandrum sativum)1209, 0909
Celery seed (Apium graveolens)1209
Peanuts (Arachis hypogaea)1209, 1202, 0713, 1106
Dried chillies/capsicum (Capsicum spp.)0904
Faba bean (Vicia faba)1209, 0713, 1106
Pigeon Pea (Cajanus cajan)1209, 0713, 1106
Pea seed (Pisum sativum)1209, 0713, 1106
Fennel seed (Foeniculum spp).1209, 0909

Target Risk Countries are:

AlbaniaIndiaMyanmarSouth Sudan
AlgeriaIran, Islamic Republic ofNepalSri Lanka
BeninIsraelNigeriaSyrian Arab Republic
Burkina FasoKuwaitOmanTimor-Leste
Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)LebanonPakistanTunisia
EgyptMaliSaudi ArabiaUnited Arab Emirates

The rural grain growing areas of Australia are yet to be defined.

Target risk containers will be required to be treated offshore prior to loading the goods using one of the below options:

  • Methyl bromide fumigationPrior to loading the goods, the container must be fumigated with a dose of 80 g/m³ or above, at 21°C or above, for a minimum of 48 hours, with an end point reading of 20 g/m3 or above. The fumigation must be conducted in a sheeted enclosure and in accordance with the Departments Methyl Bromide Fumigation Methodology.
  • Heat treatment: Prior to loading the goods, the container must be heat treated at 60°C or higher for a minimum of 120 minutes. The treatment must be conducted in accordance with the Departments Heat Treatment Methodology. Additional container-specific heat treatment instructions will be released prior to 12 April 2021.
  • Insecticide sprayPrior to loading the goods, the container must be sprayed with contact insecticide. Additional details on this treatment option will be released prior to 12 April 2021.

It should be noted that in addition to the requirements applying from 12 April 2021 the Department is looking to introduce measures to a broader range of containers.

Khapra beetle can survive as a hitchhiker pest in sea containers for a number of years. Due to its small size, its ability to survive for extended periods without food and its preference for inhabiting crevices it can remain undetected under floors and in cracks and crevices in sea containers. When conditions are favourable beetle populations can quickly increase in size and can contaminate any goods held within the container.

Initial indications are that the Department are trying to identify all containers that have carried high-risk plant products in the last 5 years and will require treatment of those containers regardless of the actual content of the containers when they are imported into Australia. This could mean a shipment of products in which the Department has no interest would need to be fumigated simply because the container has previously carried high risk plant products.

We will continue to liaise with the Department of Agriculture on these changes and will keep you updated.

Please do not hesitate to contact your Lynair Customs Team for any additional information.