Khapra beetle actions for sea containers
9th February, 2021
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.
A Target Risk Container is defined as:
- FCL/FCX container carrying high-risk plant products and loaded in a khapra beetle target risk country
- FCL/FCX container shipped from a khapra beetle target risk country and destined to a rural grain growing area of Australia.
High Risk Plant Products are defined as:
|Product||Tariff 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:
|Algeria||Iran, Islamic Republic of||Nepal||Sri Lanka|
|Benin||Israel||Nigeria||Syrian Arab Republic|
|Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)||Lebanon||Pakistan||Tunisia|
|Egypt||Mali||Saudi Arabia||United 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 fumigation: Prior 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 spray: Prior 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 SCC Customs Team for any additional information.