13 May 2022
This Industry Advice Notice (IAN) is to advise industry of the in-transit cold treatment (ITCT) certification requirements for export of grapes and citrus to Japan.
Summary of changes and key points
Exporters, shipping companies, freight forwarders and plant export Authorised Officers (AOs) must consider the following when exporting ITCT grape and citrus consignments to Japan. In future, this information will no longer be provided in annual IANs. Clients will need to refer to the relevant workplan for ITCT requirements.
- Containers must be sealed with an Australian Government bullet seal.
- ITCT must start in Australia and finish prior to arrival in Japan.
- The Japan Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) will reject consignments that require the continuation of cold treatment in Japan.
- Exporters must be aware of shipment durations and ensure that the chosen treatment schedule will be completed prior to arrival in Japan.
- ITCT consignments with multiple time gaps, or time gaps greater than four hours, will be rejected by MAFF.
- Where issues arise relating to the treatment process and assessment of ITCT data, a written explanation of the issue shall be sent to Assessment Services - Exports (ASE) for consideration.
- Where multiple containers are listed on a phytosanitary certificate, the certificate will not be issued until all containers have been assessed as satisfactory.
- The Request for Permit (RFP) must have the print indicator set to Manual (M), the print location must be set as ME3 and the treatment details must be left blank.
- Remote printing of certificates is not permitted and certificates will not be issued until treatment details have been entered into the RFP by an ASE officer following assessment of the data.
- All time recordings must be in 24 hour clock style (for example, 13:00).
- ASE will process lodgements within 3 business days for sea freight.
Note: Times are based on receipt of complete and accurate documentation supplied at time of lodging.
All grapes and citrus exported to Japan must comply with the standards stipulated in the protocol between Australia and Japan.
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 be present and 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 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.
Shipping company responsibilities
Shipping companies must meet the following documentation requirements:
- Submit complete raw data downloads to ASE.
- Where issues/discrepancies arise relating to temperature data, a reason must be provided at the time data is submitted for assessment.
- Data downloads must include all readings at the time of sealing the container.
- 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, container details and the approximate date of when the data downloads will be sent for assessment.
- 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 raw treatment data, include “ITCT Japan – [Vessel name] – Completed CT containers”, in the email subject line.
- For pre-alert/vessel summary reports, include “ITCT Japan – [Vessel name] – Vessel summary report”, in the email subject line.
- For consignment issues, include “ITCT Japan – [RFP number, Container number] – Consignment issue”, in the email subject line.
- For calibration issues, include “ITCT Japan – [RFP number, Container number] – Calibration record”, in the email subject line.
ASE officers must meet the following documentation requirements:
- ASE is responsible for assessing and endorsing treatment temperature data as well as emailing copies of the phytosanitary certificate, calibration certificate and endorsed treatment temperature data to the Australian Embassy in Japan for presentation to MAFF.
- ASE will assess ITCT data on the same business day if it is received by 12:00 pm. Any data arriving after 12:00 pm will be assessed the next business day.
- ASE will change the print indicator and distribute the phytosanitary certificate and calibration certificate to exporter.
If you have any questions regarding this IAN please email Horticulture Exports.
Plant Export Operations Branch