There has been a lot of updates lately regarding the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug and the emergency measures that have been put into place to ensure that it stays out of Australia.
We have received a few calls regarding this huge issue and would like to re-cap the dangers of this stink bug. The current measures that have been put in place by the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources to manage this pest are also addressed:
Why is this particular stink bug such a problem?
This stink bug does not occur in Australia and is a pest of considerable biosecurity concern. It is highly invasive and a voracious feeder with an extensive host range (about 300 known plants including fruit, vegetables and ornamentals). Juveniles and adults feed on, and severely damage, fruit and vegetable crops. The bug is not a risk to human health but is regarded as a nuisance pest because of its habit of seeking shelter in vehicles, homes and factories in large numbers over the winter period. Information on the stink bug has been published previously on the department’s website.
Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Season
The season dates (this year) are the same as for the 2016-17 season. The measures apply to target goods shipped from the United States and Italy from 1 September 2017 to 30 April 2018 inclusive.
Containerised cargo from the USA
- FCL/ FCX containerised goods in the target tariffs are subject to the same requirements as break bulk
- for used goods shipped between 1 September 2017 and 30 April 2018
- for new goods manufactured and/or stored between 1 September 2017 and 1 December 2017
- for new goods manufactured on or after 1 December 2017.
- As with last season, LCL containerised goods will not be targeted under these measures.
- FCL/FCX containerised goods that arrive untreated will require mandatory treatment onshore. Containers will be permitted discharge to the wharf if the seals are intact, and moved to either an Approved Arrangement Site 1.1 or 1.3 (if fumigation facilities are available) for treatment.
Break Bulk cargo from the USA and Italy
- From 1 September 2017, all used goods in the target tariffs shipped as break bulk must be treated for potential BMSB infestations prior to shipment on or before 30 April 2018.
- New goods in the target tariffs manufactured and/or stored between
1 September 2017 and 1 December 2017 and shipped as break bulk on or before 30 April 2018 must undergo offshore treatment, unless subject to safeguarding arrangements approved by the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources.
- New goods in the target tariffs manufactured on or after 1 December 2017 and shipped as break bulk on or before 30 April 2018 require a consignment specific manufacturer’s new and used and not field tested (NUFT) declaration which includes the date and place of manufacture.
- Goods that arrive untreated must be treated onshore on wharf or at an Approved Arrangement Site 1.1 if safe to move. Treatment must occur within 48 hours of discharge at the wharf of arrival. If this cannot be arranged, the goods will not be permitted discharge but may be shipped to another port where treatment facilities are available or may be exported.
- The department considers goods transported on flat rack containers to be break bulk cargo.
Containerised cargo from Italy
Due to increased detections of BMSB on both target and non-target goods the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources from 17 January 2017 has enacted emergency measures to manage the increased risk of BMSB entering Australia on containerised cargo from Italy.
To manage the risk posed by these goods, all containerised goods (FCL, FCX and LCL) shipped via sea cargo from Italy that arrive in Australia between 17 January 2018 and 30 April 2018 will be required to undergo an approved treatment. Refer to 2017-18 BMSB Season Measures for approved treatment options for this pest.
Goods already treated offshore with one of the approved BMSB treatments, and where a valid treatment certificate is presented to the department, will not require further treatment.
Exceptions from treatment also apply to goods that fall within one of the excluded tariff groups:
- Fresh produce (including nursery stock and live plants)
- Live animals
- Food for human consumption (including beverages)
- Seeds for sowing
- Pharmaceutical products
All other containerised goods arriving from Italy (including new and unused goods), including those already en route to Australia, will require treatment on arrival using methyl bromide, or another approved treatment for BMSB.
These measures are in addition to existing import requirements.
The approved treatments for BMSB are:
- Sulfuryl fluoride – at least 48g/m3 for 6 hours or longer or at least 16g/m3 for 12 hours or longer both with an end point reading of 50 per cent or more of the initial concentration and conducted at a temperature of 10 °C or higher. Please note this temperature is 5 °C lower than the methyl bromide conditions below.
- Methyl bromide – at least 16g/m3 for 12 hours or longer with an end point reading of 50per cent or more of the initial concentration and conducted at a temperature of 15 °C or higher. Please note this temperature is 5 °C higher than the sulfuryl fluoride conditions above.
- Heat – at 50 °C or greater for at least 20 minutes. The minimum temperature of the coldest part of the treated good should reach at least 50 °C for at least 20 minutes.
How to identify a brown marmorated stink bug:
These pest are easily recognisable by their alternating distinct black and white bands on their abdomen. They also have white bands on their dark antennae. Their smooth shoulders are also noticeable.
What happens if you find a Brown Marmorated Stink Bug on your cargo?
The sooner the department knows about any suspect bugs, the better able it will be able to manage the risk. The Biosecurity Act 2015 requires persons in charge of goods that are subject to biosecurity control to notify the department of reportable biosecurity incidents such as live pests. If you notice insects on imported goods, report them either:
- directly to a biosecurity officer
- to the department on 1800 798 636
- by completing a Reportable Biosecurity Incident form.
See Reportable biosecurity incidents on the department’s website for more information.