Biosecurity Advice 2013-10 - Final review of policy: Importation of grapevine (Vitis species) propagative material into Australia

​29 April 2013


This Biosecurity Advice (BA) notifies stakeholders of the release of the ‘Final review of policy: importation of grapevine (Vitis species) propagative material into Australia’ on 29 April 2013.

Background

DAFF initiated this review as new pathogens have been identified on grapevines and several pathogens have extended their global range. DAFF regularly reviews existing policies to import propagative material of various commodities to safeguard Australian agricultural industries from exotic pests.

DAFF has been working to improve the speed with which imports can be achieved to provide industry with access to improved overseas varieties of grapevines. In this context, DAFF has recommended the introduction of molecular tests to replace lengthy woody indexing procedures for certain pathogens. Additionally, DAFF has recommended a framework to approve overseas sources to supply pathogen tested propagative material.

The draft policy review was released on 18 January 2013 for a 30 day consultation period (BA 2013/01). Following stakeholder consultation, all comments received were carefully considered in the finalisation of the policy.

Recommended measures

The existing conditions (fumigation with methyl bromide; hot water treatment; visual screening for disease symptoms in PEQ and active testing) are further strengthened through the introduction of additional diagnostic measures to protect Australia from exotic pests.

The introduction of molecular techniques will improve the efficacy of detecting pathogens, thereby strengthening risk management measures for grapevine propagative material. The review recommends several changes to the existing policy that will reduce the amount of time required for grapevine dormant cuttings and tissue culture to be grown in PEQ facilities.

All sources (unknown health status)

Dormant cuttings

  • Mandatory on-arrival inspection; fumigation; hot water treatment; and surface sterilisation; 
  • Mandatory growth in a closed government PEQ facility for a minimum period of 16 months for pathogen screening (visual observation; culturing; and electron microscopy); and 
  • Active pathogen testing through herbaceous host indexing and molecular tests including, but not limited to, PCR or ELISA.

Tissue cultures (microplantlets)

  • Mandatory on-arrival inspection; 
  • Mandatory growth in a closed government PEQ facility for a minimum period of 12 months for pathogen screening (visual observation; culturing; and electron microscopy); and 
  • Active pathogen testing through herbaceous host indexing and molecular tests including, but not limited to, PCR or ELISA.

Seed

  • Mandatory on-arrival inspection, surface sterilisation, fungicidal treatment, and growth in a closed government PEQ facility for a minimum period of nine months for pathogen screening (visual observation and electron microscopy); and 
  • Active pathogen testing through herbaceous host indexing and molecular tests including, but not limited to, PCR.]

Approved sources (high health-sources)

The recommended changes to import requirements for dormant cuttings and tissue cultures from non-approved sources will also apply to material from approved sources (e.g. the PEQ period will be reduced to 16 months for dormant cuttings and 12 months for tissue cultures). Seed for sowing from approved sources is currently not subject to PEQ and this is recommended to continue.

Please pass this notice to other interested parties. If those parties wish to be included in future communications on this matter they should contact Plant Biosecurity. 


Tom Aldred
First Assistant Secretary

Contact:  Bill Magee
Telephone:  +61 2 6272 3220
Facsimile:  +61 2 6271 3307