Please refer to the following announcement from the Australian Department of Agriculture issued on 22nd January 2015:

02-2015 - Emergency measures for specific sea freight consignments of containerised and break bulk cargo sourced and shipped from the east coast ports of United States.

In summary, due to a number of Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs (Halyomorpha halys) found on and in some cargo imported from the U.S., new clean cargo measures have been established to minimise the risk of biosecurity concern to Australian Agriculture.

Currently, fumigation treatment is being arranged in Australia when the pests are discovered. However, this is causing major treatment difficulties and logistical issues. After consideration, the Australian Department of Agriculture has put new measures in place for vessels arriving to the country after 23rd February 2015.

New Mandatory Clean Cargo Requirements – effective for vessels inbound to Australia from 23 February 2015:

The mandatory requirements apply for the following consignments and cargo types:

  • All break bulk vehicles (including boats), machinery and parts (including those used in agriculture, mining, earthmoving, construction, animal farming, timber felling, horticulture, fruit handling and food processing), and automotive parts within 48 hours prior to loading and;
  • Containerised shipments of vehicles and boats, machinery and parts (including those used in agriculture, mining, earthmoving, construction, animal farming, timber felling, horticulture, fruit handling and food processing), automotive parts, and tyres within 24 hours prior to loading.

These mandatory requirements state that pre-shipping fumigation treatments will be mandated for all cargo types listed above that are shipped from the United States East Coast ports to any port in Australia. For all high-risk cargo types listed above, please be aware that:

  • Cargo needs to be accompanied by a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) certification of efficacy of treatment
  • There will be on-arrival inspection of high-risk consignments as determined by the department. 

WWL may be able to facilitate pre-shipment treatments in Savannah and at some other ports at cost value. Shippers can also make own fumigation treatment arrangements at their own expense, provided they meet the requirements with proof of documentation. Without proper treatment credentials, WWL will not be able to load the affected cargo types to vessels bound for Australia.

 Acceptable pre-shipment treatments include:

  • Heat (60°C/140°F) for 30 minutes in the coldest location of the cargo
  • Methyl bromide (32g/m3@21-25°C for 24 hours)
  • Sulfuryl fluoride (32g/m3@21-25°C for 24 hours or 40g/m3@16-20°C for 24 hours)

In the interim, high risk cargo will be inspected by biosecurity inspectors before any discharge is permitted in Australia. In order for discharge to occur, Inspectors must be confident that the biosecurity risk can be contained or managed, or required treatments occur within designated timeframes.

If the requirements are not met, the department may force the goods to be re-exported. Any cargo that is permitted to be discharged can only be landed on the wharf, and can’t be moved until the biosecurity officer has released the goods from quarantine.

If your cargo has not accompanied with an offshore treatment you can find further on-arrival measures in the Department of Agriculture ICON database shortly.

Pending inspection outcomes, the department anticipates that these measures will be in place through April 2015. While it is known that these emergency measures may cause some inconvenience in the supply chain, the significant biosecurity risk posed by this pest and a large number of recent detections has warranted the above emergency measures to protect Australia’s agriculture. 

Please contact your local Customer Care Representative for further updates should your cargo be impacted. Select this link and relevant country to see local Customer Care Representatives emails and phone numbers.

Additionally, please visit this notification on a regular basis, as it will be updated continuously.