Biosecurity Fact Sheet: Longans from Vietnam

​​​​Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, December 2018

The factsheet provides an overview of the risk analysis for fresh longan fruit from Vietnam.

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Key facts

  • We released the draft report for fresh longan fruit from Vietnam on 10 December 2018.
  • Stakeholders can submit comments on the draft report during the extended 75 calendar day public consultation period, from the standard 60 days, due to the Christmas/New Year holiday period. The extended consultation period will close on 25 February 2019.
  • The final report will be published after consideration of comments on the draft report. We expect to publish the final report around mid-2019.

Risk analysis for longans from Vietnam

We initiated a risk analysis in response to a formal market access request to import fresh longan fruit from Vietnam. Longan fruit is Vietnam’s highest horticultural priority for new market access.

Australia (as a World Trade Organization (WTO) member) must meet its international obligations by assessing market access requests (import proposals) and developing the least trade restrictive and scientifically justified import conditions where required. Our trading partners use the same principles when assessing Australian market access requests.

Australia currently permits imports of fresh longan fruit for human consumption from China and Thailand, provided they meet Australia’s biosecurity import conditions.

The draft report identifies 11 quarantine pests and two regulated articles (regulated thrips) associated with longans from Vietnam that require risk management measures, in combination with operational systems, to achieve Australia’s appropriate level of protection. These pests are:

  • Quarantine pests: guava fruit fly, Oriental fruit fly, melon fruit fly, litchi fruit borer, grey pineapple mealybug, cocoa mealybug, litchi mealybug, Pacific mealybug, coffee mealybug, intercepted mealybug and citriculus mealybug.
  • Regulated articles: chilli thrips and onion thrips. These thrips are regulated articles because they can carry and spread orthotospoviruses that are quarantine pests for Australia.

The proposed risk management measures include:

  • area freedom or fruit treatment (such as irradiation or cold disinfestation treatment) for fruit flies
  • consignment freedom verified by pre-export visual inspection and, if found, remedial action for mealybugs and thrips
  • area freedom, fruit treatment (such as irradiation or cold disinfestation treatment) or a systems approach for litchi fruit borer.

Upon finalising this policy, Vietnam must be able to demonstrate to the department that processes and procedures are in place to implement the agreed risk management measures. This will ensure safe trade in fresh longans from Vietnam. Import conditions can then be published on the department’s biosecurity import conditions (BICON) database.

Process for a risk analysis

The objective of undertaking a risk analysis is to ensure that any fresh products imported into Australia are free from unwanted pests. The department initially identifies pests associated with fruit or vegetable production and export in the source country that are not present in Australia.

The assessment includes analysis of the potential pests of concern and recommends risk management measures if required. If there are no available risk management measures to effectively manage particular biosecurity risks, trade is not permitted until suitable measures are identified. As part of the risk analysis process, the department will also verify commercial production, packing and export practices in the source country.

How stakeholders can contribute

Stakeholders are invited to comment on the draft report during the extended 75 calendar day public consultation period, which closes on 25 February 2019. Stakeholders can make their submission via the department’s website. The final report will be published after consideration of stakeholder comments.

Australia-Vietnam trade

Australia and Vietnam have a strong two-way trade relationship. In 2015-16, Vietnam was Australia’s sixth largest market for agriculture, fisheries and forestry products. Vietnam is a major market for Australian crustaceans, wheat and live animals. In 2015–16, total agriculture, fisheries and forestry exports to Vietnam were valued at approximately $2.08 billion. Total agriculture, fisheries and forestry imports from Vietnam were valued at approximately $623 million.

Longan production in Vietnam

Fresh longan fruit in Vietnam is typically based on small orchard production. Longan fruit is produced all year round in the southern regions with production peaking in June and July. In the northern regions the peak production season is from July to August, with some newer cultivars harvested up to early September. In 2014, Vietnam produced over 515,100 tonnes of fresh longan fruit. Vietnam currently exports longan fruit to many countries including China, Singapore, Malaysia and the United States of America.

Longan production in Australia

In Australia, fresh longan fruit are often produced in the same orchards as lychee fruit. Production primarily occurs in Queensland (95% of domestic production), as well as northern New South Wales (FAO 2002). The Australian longan season is usually between January and mid-June.

The Australian longan industry is small and primarily focused on domestic fresh fruit supply. However, in the last five years Australia exported longan fruit to French Polynesia, Canada, Nauru and Papua New Guinea.

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