13 May 2022
This Industry Advice Notice (IAN) is to advise industry of the in-transit cold treatment (ITCT) certification requirements for the export of citrus to the USA.
Summary of changes and key points
- Exporters are now responsible for submitting USDA PPQ 556 processing from Assessment Services – Exports (ASE); see exporter responsibilities below.
- In future, the following information will no longer be reflected in annual IANs. Clients will need to refer to the relevant workplan for ITCT.
- USDA PPQ 556 processing must be completed for consignments to be cleared on arrival in the USA.
- ITCT must start in Australia and finish prior to arrival in the USA.
- Mixed consignments are not permitted for ITCT to the USA. Only the same species of fruit may be treated together.
- Supervision of citrus ITCT to the USA must only be conducted by Authorised Officers (AOs) who have been trained and approved to implement the USDA requirements. If you are unsure if you have been approved for this activity, please contact Plant Export Training.
- Shipments to US Territories must also submit documentation for clearance.
- Containers transhipping via an additional country and changing vessels before reaching the USA or its territories must be declared in the authorisation email. Treatment completion may be required before changing vessels.
- ASE will process lodgements within 3 business days for sea freight.
Note: Times are based on receipt of complete and accurate documentation supplied at the time of lodging.
All citrus exported to the USA and its territories must comply with the standards stipulated in the workplan agreements between Australia and the USA.
Plant export inspection AO responsibilities
- AOs are responsible for supervising and verifying that all steps of the ITCT process are correctly applied in accordance with the Work Instruction: Initiating an in-transit cold treatment for plant exports.
- AOs must record their ITCT calibration in the Plant Export Management System (PEMS), where the system has also been used to record the commodity inspection.
Exporters must meet the following documentation requirements:
- Exporters must notify ASE via email, that their calibration certificate and supporting documents are available for verification in PEMS at the time of requesting their Request for Permit (RFP) authorisation.
- Exporters must advise ASE at time of authorisation if transhipment via an additional country or vessel change will occur enroute to the USA or its territories.
- Exporters must submit USDA PPQ 556 processing requests (including container numbers) at least 2 days before completion is required. For example, if completion is required by Friday or on the weekend, then the USDA PPQ 556 processing request should be submitted by COB Wednesday of that week.
- Inspections for citrus ITCT exports to the USA should not be booked on Fridays when the vessel is leaving that weekend as this leaves insufficient time for processing.
Shipping company responsibilities
- Shipping companies must meet the following documentation requirements:
- Email a weekly ‘pre-alert/vessel summary report’ by close of business each Thursday, to ASE. This summary report must include the estimated date of vessel arrival and container details.
- A list of the container numbers for which data is being submitted must be included within the body of the email.
- Emails to ASE must state in the subject line, one of the following options:
- For RFP authorisation, include “Authorisation RFP [RFP number] – Horticulture [Date of Departure]; Sea”, in the email subject line.
- For shipping notification Pre-alert, include “USDA 556 ITCT – [Vessel name] – Pre-Alert”, in the email subject line.
- For shipping notifications USDA PPQ 556 ITCT Processing Request, include “USDA 556 ITCT – [Vessel name]”, in the email subject line.
- For consignment issues, include “USDA 556 ITCT – [RFP number, Container number] – Consignment issue”, in the email subject line.
If you have any questions regarding this IAN please email Horticulture Exports.
Plant Export Operations Branch