8 April 2010
Biosecurity Australia has today commenced three separate import risk analyses(IRAs)to assess possible risks to the health of Australian animals from any future decision to import beef and beef products for human consumption from the United States, Canada and Japan.
Chief Executive of Biosecurity Australia Dr Colin Grant said these three countries had already applied to Australia for market access for their beef.
“These IRAs form a separate and parallel process to that being conducted by Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) to assess potential food safety risks from beef from countries that have previously had outbreaks of bovine spongiform encephalopathy or BSE,” Dr Grant said.
“In parallel with the FSANZ process, these IRAs will provide reassurance to the Australian community that the potential risks of beef imports from Canada, Japan and the United States have been assessed.
“The Biosecurity Australia Advice released today marks the formal beginning of three IRAs.”
Biosecurity Australia will draft the IRA reports with the assistance of an expert panel, which stakeholders will then have 60 days to consider and comment on.
The process will also have additional assurance from the independent Eminent Scientists Group, which will review each IRA within the two-year timeframe.
As part of the IRA process, Biosecurity Australia scientists will visit the applicant countries alongside FSANZ to assess relevant issues.
For more information visit www.daff.gov.au/ba.
Details of the separate FSANZ process are available on its website at www.foodstandards.gov.au/consumerinformation/bovinespongiformencephalopathybse.Media inquiries:
02 6272 3232