Stink bug measures in Australia

Stink bug measures in Australia are implemented by authorities to prevent the spread of the brown marmorated stink bug in the country. These bugs see seasonal increases in places like North America and Europe. In order to prevent the spread of these bugs into Australia, authorities introduce several seasonal measures that screen specific goods manufactured in at risk countries, shipped from at risk countries or vessels that have berthed at at risk countries.

Formal announcements are made every year to indicate the period during which these measure are put into place. Importers are expected to comply with these measures or cargo will not be allowed to enter the country.

Stink bug treatment of goods:

  • Affected goods in scope of the regulations must be treated by a qualified provider approved under the Offshore BMSB Treatment Providers Scheme
  • If offshore treatment is not possible, in some cases goods may be allowed for onshore treatment instead
  • If cargo is shipped as break bulk cargo, they must be treated offshore, or else they will be denied entry
  • Goods in open containers or flat racked containers are treated as break bulk
  • Containerized cargo can be treated at the container level, either onshore or offshore. The same applies to refrigerated containers
  • However, FCL containers that have modifications done to allow in-built power generators are treated as break bulk
  • Removal of goods will not be allowed prior to treatment onshore
  • To show proof that the cargo in question has been sealed in the container after treatment, a BMSB sealing declaration must be provided with the import entry
  • All shipments in scope of the measures are subject to random inspections

What treatment methods can be used?

Several options are available for treating cargo.

  • Heat treatment
  • Methyl Bromide
  • Sulfuryl Fluoride

Further details concerning the technical specifications of treatment options can be found on the Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment’s website.

The Department will only accept BMSB treatment certificates from approved vendors if the shipment is coming from a targeted risk country.

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