19 July 2011
Biosecurity Australia Advice 2011/10 - Final import risk analysis report for table grapes from the People’s Republic of China
This Biosecurity Australia Advice notifies stakeholders that Australia’s Director of Animal and Plant Quarantine has determined a policy for the importation of table grapes from the People’s Republic of China. The importation of table grapes may be permitted subject to the Quarantine Act 1908, the application of phytosanitary measures as specified in the Final import risk analysis report for table grapes from the People’s Republic of China and the application of suitable emergency measures for Drosophila suzukii.
In response to a proposal from the People’s Republic of China (China), Biosecurity Australia completed an import risk analysis (IRA) on table grapes from China. The IRA was completed in accordance with the provisions stipulated in the Import Risk Analysis Handbook 2007 (update 2009) (IRA Handbook) for a standard regulated process.
The IRA commenced on 18 August 2008 (Biosecurity Australia Advice (BAA) 2008/28). A draft IRA report was released for stakeholder comment on 19 February 2010 (BAA 2010/01). On 21 October 2010, the provisional final IRA report was released for a period of 60 days (BAA 2010/29), during which appeals could be made on the basis of a failure by Biosecurity Australia to follow proper process as set out in the IRA Handbook. No appeals were received during this period.
Table grapes are a host for Drosophila suzukii (spotted wing drosophila – SWD) and this pest is native to China. Australia formally announced emergency measures for host commodities of SWD (strawberry, cherry, stone fruit and table grape) on 7 April 2010. These measures will remain in place only until the PRA is concluded.
A pest risk analysis (PRA) for SWD was announced on 31 March 2010 (BAA 2010/09) to assess the risks of this pest from all countries for all known hosts. The draft PRA report was released on 21 October 2010 (BAA 2010/28) for a 60-day stakeholder consultation period. Eight submissions were received that are being considered, and the final PRA report is expected to be released in 2011. Measures arising from the final PRA report for SWD will augment final policy measures outlined in the final IRA report for table grapes from China.
The Director of Animal and Plant Quarantine has made a policy determination to permit the entry of table grapes from China to Australia, subject to the Quarantine Act 1908, the Quarantine Proclamation 1998, the application of phytosanitary measures, as specified in the Final import risk analysis report for table grapes from the People’s Republic of China and the application of suitable emergency measures for SWD. Biosecurity Australia considers that the risk management measures considered in this final report will achieve Australia’s appropriate level of protection against identified quarantine pests.
The quarantine measures include sourcing fruit from registered vineyards and a combination of risk management measures and operational systems to reduce the risk associated with the identified quarantine pests. These include pest free areas, pest free places of production, vineyard control and surveillance, vineyard and packing management, fruit bagging, and inspection and remedial action if quarantine pests are detected. These measures will be supported by an operational system that maintains and verifies the quarantine status of consignments to Australia, through inspection by the Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS). An AQIS officer will be present in China under an off-shore verification arrangement to inspect and verify all consignments prior to export. The off-shore verification arrangement is to be used for at least the first season of trade and is subject to review after substantial initial trade has occurred and AQIS is satisfied with the systems in place.
The policy will be taken into account by Australian authorities when considering import permit applications for table grapes from China in accordance with the Quarantine Act 1908 and Quarantine Proclamation 1998 as amended.
Australia and China will now develop a detailed operational protocol (including the work plan and work instructions). These will need to be approved by Biosecurity Australia and AQIS before any import permit can be issued.
Dr Colin J Grant