All biosecurity requirements must be met before Imported Food Inspection Scheme requirements apply.
Check our Biosecurity Import Conditions system (BICON) for biosecurity import conditions.
We classify imported food that presents a potential medium or high risk to public health as risk food. All risk food is listed in the Imported Food Control Order 2019.
Fish and fish products of a particular kind are classified as risk food
Fish of the families listed are considered histamine susceptible fish. This includes all fish in the families:
- Carangidae (for example, trevallies, jacks and pompanos)
- Clupeidae (for example, herrings, sardines)
- Coryphaenidae (for example, mahi-mahi)
- Engraulidae (for example, anchovy)
- Pomatomidae (for example, bluefish)
- Scomberesocidae (for example, king gars and saury)
- Scombridae (for example, tuna, mackerel and bonito).
Fish products that contain more than 300 g per kg of all or any of the fish in the families listed are also risk foods.
Fish and fish products classified as risk food may be whole, fillets or in portions. This includes fish and fish products that are:
- raw (fresh, chilled or frozen)
- processed (cooked, smoked, dried and pickled)
- retorted and shelf stable.
Food from New Zealand.
When lodging a Full Import Declaration (FID), use the correct ICS document code and certificate number for the food.
See lodging declarations and documentation.
Community Protection (CP) question
You will need to answer this CP question when lodging your full import declaration:
IFIS: Are the goods or do the goods contain more than 300 g/kg (30%) of fish of the family Scombridae, Coryphaenidae, Pomatomidae, Carangidae, Clupeidae, Engraulidae or Scomberesociadae? For more information search ‘histamine susceptible fish’ at www.awe.gov.au.
Inspection and testing
We refer consignments of fish and fish products of the families listed for analytical testing. During inspection, we will also conduct a visual and label assessment. Additional testing may also apply for certain ready-to-eat finfish.
Table 1 shows the test that will be applied and permitted results for each food type.
Table 1, Food type, test applied and permitted result
|Food type||Test applied||Permitted result|
|Fish in the family:
||Histamine||Maximum level 200 mg/kg|
Food safety risks
Food Standard Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has given us advice about the risk of fish and fish products of the families listed are associated with histamine formation. These products present a potential medium or high risk to public health for histamine poisoning.
Voluntary foreign government certification arrangements
We have a voluntary certification arrangement in place with Canada and Thailand for the fish and fish products listed. Consignments of these foods from Canada and Thailand with a recognised government certificate have a reduced rate of inspection and testing.
|Type of information||To include|
|National competent authority:||Canadian Food Inspection Agency|
|Recognised certificate title:||Certificate of Origin and Hygiene|
|ICS document code:||CI|
|Type of information||To include|
|National competent authority:||Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives – Department of Fisheries|
|Recognised certificate title:||Health Certificate for fishery and aquaculture products originating in Thailand|
|Additional requirement:||The certificate must identify that the food has been sourced from an establishment approved by the Department of Fisheries, Thailand.|
|ICS document code:||DOFHCTH|
Animal products are retorted if they are heated in a hermetically sealed container to a minimum core temperature of 100°C, obtaining an F0 value of at least 2.8.
Goods are shelf-stable if the:
- goods have been commercially manufactured
- goods have been packaged by the manufacturer
- goods are in that package
- package has not been opened or broken
- goods are able to be stored in the package at room or ambient temperature, and
- goods do not require refrigeration or freezing before the package is opened.
|Date||Reference number||Amendment details|
|13/02/2023||HIS 12/2016||Amend the webpage to update the link to the list of fish processing establishments approved by the Department of Fisheries, Thailand.|
|11/10/2019||HIS 12/2016||Update to the webpage to include a link to the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation’s fish names database.|
|08/08/2017||HIS 12/2016||Update to the webpage to provide additional detail about the sampling of histamine susceptible fish and fish products.|
|21/12/2016||HIS 12/2016||Updates the webpage to reflect amendments to the Imported Food Control Order 2001 to classify more species of fish and fish products as risk foods.|
|01/05/2014||SCM 05/2014||Replaces Imported Food Notice 09/12 Tests applied to risk category foods|