All biosecurity requirements must be met before Imported Food Inspection Scheme requirements apply.
Check our Biosecurity Import Conditions system (BICON) for biosecurity import conditions.
Raw milk cheese is classified as risk food
Raw milk cheese is cheese that has not undergone a heat treatment step during production. Heat treatment includes:
- thermisation with additional measures
- high temperature curd cook with additional measures.
Food from New Zealand.
Current certification arrangements
France – Roquefort cheese and Ossau Iraty
You can import raw milk cheeses Roquefort and Ossau Iraty from France into Australia with this certificate.
|Type of information||To include|
|National competent authority:||Ministère de l’Agriculture et de l’Alimentation|
|Recognised certificate title:||Health Certificate for the Export of Raw milk Cheese (Roquefort or Ossau Iraty) from France to Australia|
|ICS document code:||SCER|
United Kingdom – 12 kinds of raw milk cheese
You can import these raw milk cheeses from the United Kingdom into Australia with this certificate.
- Appleby’s Cheshire
- Appleby’s Double Gloucester
- Isle of Mull
- Keen’s Cheddar
- Kirkham’s Lancashire
- Lincolnshire Poacher
- Montgomery’s Cheddar
- Sparkenhoe Red Leicester
- St Andrew’s Anster
- St Andrew’s Cheddar
- Westcombe Cheddar
|Type of information||To include|
|National competent authority:||Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland|
|Recognised certificate title:||Export of Raw Milk Cheese to Australia Health Certificate (includes Supplementary Certificate: Export of Raw Milk Cheese from the United Kingdom to Australia)|
|ICS document code:||RMCHCUK|
When lodging a Full Import Declaration (FID), use the correct ICS document code and certificate number for the food.
Inspection and testing
We refer consignments of raw milk cheese for analytical testing at the rate of 5%.
During inspection, we will also conduct a visual and label assessment.
Table 1 shows the tests that will be applied and permitted results.
Table 1, Test applied and permitted result
|Test applied||Permitted result|
|Salmonella||n=5, c=0, m=not detected in 25 g|
Ready-to-eat food which does not support the growth of Listeria monocytogenes
|n=5, c=0, m=100 cfu/g|
n = the number of samples to be analysed from a lot of food.
c = the maximum number of sample units that can be greater than ‘m’.
m = the acceptable microbiological level in a sample unit.
Food safety risks
Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has given us advice about the risk of raw milk cheese. This food presents a potential medium or high risk to public health for the pathogenic microorganisms:
- Salmonella spp.
- Shiga toxin producing Escherichia coli
- Brucella spp.
- Mycobacterium bovis.
To make sure there are food safety controls in place to manage these hazards, imports must be covered by a recognised foreign government certificate. We verify these controls are effective by conducting analytical testing. See current arrangements.
Milk or dairy products used to make cheese or cheese products are pasteurised by:
- heating to at least 72° C and retaining at this temperature for no less than 15 seconds
- heating, using any other time and temperature combination of equal or greater lethal effect on any pathogenic microorganisms in the milk or dairy product
- using any other process that provides an equal or greater lethal effect on any pathogenic microorganisms.
Thermisation with additional measures
Milk used to make cheese or cheese products has been processed by being held at a temperature of at least 64.5°C for at least 16 seconds. The cheese or cheese product is stored at a temperature of no less than 7°C for at least 90 days from the date of processing.
High temperature curd cook with additional measures
Milk or dairy products used to make cheese or cheese products have been processed so the:
- curd is heated to at least 48°C
- cheese or cheese product has a moisture content of less than 39%, after being stored no less than 10°C for at least 120 days from the date of processing.
|Date||Reference number||Amendment details|
|21/07/2022||RMC 07‑2022||Updated with details of new recognised foreign government certificate for 12 kinds of raw milk cheese that can be exported under a new arrangement with the United Kingdom.|
|04/08/2021||RMC 08-2021||Updated with title of new recognised foreign government certificate for Roquefort and Ossau Iraty.|
|10/07/2018||RMC 07-2018||Updated to reflect the introduction of a mandatory IFIS Importer declaration for cheese made from unpasteurised milk.|
New risk food