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Biosecurity Advisory 6/2019 - Changes to import requirements for fruit fly host produce fumigated with methyl bromide

Changes to import requirement for fruit fly host produce fumigated with methyl bromide (IR2)

In response to recent evidence of fumigation failures in fruit fly host produce from Victoria, Biosecurity Tasmania have made some significant amendments to Import Requirement 2 – Fruit Fly Host Produce – Disinfestation with Methyl Bromide.  The amendments were made in consultation with Agriculture Victoria who have also made Tasmania-specific amendments to the Victorian Interstate Certification Assurance arrangement ICA-04 – Fumigation for Quarantine operational procedure.

The amendments to IR2 are:

  1. Improved specifications regarding extensive fruit core temperature checking throughout pallets of produce prior to fumigation to ensure that fruit core temperature is consistently at or above 17°C;
  2. A new requirement to maintain an ambient air temperature of 17°C in the fumigation chamber throughout the two hour fumigation; and
  3. A new requirement for pre-treatment 600 unit inspections for all mangoes and stone fruit to verify that the produce is free from live fruit fly larvae prior to fumigation occurring.

The amended IR2 took effect from 12:01am on Friday 1 March 2019. With these changes in place, Biosecurity Tasmania will again accept fruit fly host produce fumigated by accredited businesses under ICA-04.

It is likely that the amended IR2 will remain in place until a national re-write of ICA-04 occurs. However, should further larval detections be made, Biosecurity Tasmania will take further actions as necessary.

Biosecurity Tasmania will also continue to conduct increased inspections of high risk fruit fly host produce entering the State.

The amended IR2 can be found here.