Biosecurity Advice 2018-26 - Biosecurity requirements for post-entry processing of salmonid products sourced from approved countries (excluding New Zealand) - Request for stakeholder comment

​10 October 2018

This Biosecurity Advice invites stakeholders to provide comment on the proposed changes to the existing certification and the post-entry processing requirements for salmonid products sourced from approved countries (excluding New Zealand). Comments are due by 12 December 2018.

The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources has conducted a review of the import conditions for salmonid products exported from approved countries through funding provided under the 2015 Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper. This review has recommended a change to the post-entry processing requirements for all salmonid products that are sourced from approved countries (excluding New Zealand).

The proposed changes will require all salmonid product imported in a form that requires further processing in Australia to remain under biosecurity control at an establishment that has entered into an approved arrangement with the department. Salmonid product subject to this requirement will only be released from biosecurity control after it has been transformed into a consumer ready form.

Salmonid product that is imported in a consumer ready form will not be subject to these conditions.

A salmonid consumer ready form is defined as:

  • cutlets, including the central bone and external skin but excluding fins, each cutlet weighing no more than 450 grams
  • skinless fillets, excluding the belly flap and all bone except the pin bones, of any weight
  • skin-on fillets, excluding the belly flap and all bone except the pin bones, each fillet weighing no more than 450 grams
  • eviscerated, headless ‘pan-size’ fish, each fish weighing no more than 450 grams
  • product that is processed further than described above.

These changes will allow for more effective management of high risk waste material that is generated when imported salmonids are further processed in Australia.

To facilitate this change, further amendments are required to the product and packaging description on the government certificate provided to trading partners in the letter of 7 May 2018 advising of Australia’s consolidation of import conditions for salmonid products.

Salmonid products sourced and processed in approved countries (excluding New Zealand) can still be packaged individually, in plastic sleeves, pouches or other packaging, or as loose pieces in cartons of any weight, but the form of the salmonid product must now be stated on the government certificate, with two options for description of the salmonid product:

  • is in consumer ready form, or
  • is not in a consumer ready form.              

Thermally treated salmonid products can be sent individually packaged, in plastic sleeves, pouches or other packaging, in cartons of any weight and will not be required to have any post processing requirements, as any biosecurity risk has been mitigated through the heat treatment applied.

The amended import permit conditions for salmonid products sourced and processed in approved countries (excluding New Zealand), and for thermally treated salmonid products from, recognised countries are outlined in Attachment 1.

These proposed changes are consistent with the findings of the 1999 Import Risk Analysis on Non-viable Salmonids and Non-salmonid Marine Finfish (1999 IRA).

Comments should be submitted by 12 December 2018 to:

Animal Biosecurity
Department of Agriculture and Water Resources
GPO Box 858
CANBERRA ACT 2601
Telephone +61 2 6272 4465
Facsimile +61 2 6272 3856

Email: Animal

All submissions received by 12 December 2018 will be considered by Animal Biosecurity before any changes in existing policy are made.

Please pass this notice to other interested parties. If those parties wish to be included in future communications on this matter they should contact Animal Biosecurity.

Confidentiality

Subject to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 and the Privacy Act 1988, all submissions received in response to Biosecurity Advices will be publically available and may be listed or referred to in any papers or reports prepared on the subject matter.

The Commonwealth reserves the right to reveal the identity of a respondent unless a request for anonymity accompanies the submission. Where a request for anonymity does not accompany the submission the respondent will be taken to have consented to the disclosure of his or her identity for the purposes of Information Privacy Principal 11 of the Privacy Act. The contents of the submission will only be treated as confidential if they are marked ‘confidential’ and they can be classified as such in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act.

[signed]

Dr Jonathan Taylor
A/g Assistant Secretary
Animal Biosecurity


Attachment 1 Australian import permit conditions - pre arrival in Australia

Salmonid products sourced, processed and exported from approved countries (excluding New Zealand)

End use – Human consumption

Source

  1. Salmonids must only be sourced from one of the following approved countries:

    Australia, Canada, Denmark, New Zealand, Norway, Republic of Ireland, the United Kingdom and/or the United States of America.
  2. Only product derived from salmonid species listed at Appendix 1 may be imported into Australia.

  3. The fish must meet the following import conditions.

    To demonstrate compliance with this requirement you must present the following on an Official Government Certificate issued by the competent authority of the source country:

    A statement that:

    1. The consignment does not contain product derived from Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) or rainbow trout (Onchorhynchus mykiss)

      Or

    2. The salmonid fish from which the product was derived did not come from a farm infected by, or officially suspected of being infected by, infectious salmon anaemia, or from waters within 10km or one tidal interchange (whichever is greater) of an infected, or officially suspected farm.

      And

    3. The salmonid fish from which the product was derived were:

      1. harvested from a population for which a documented health surveillance program exists, administered by the competent authority of the source country; and
      2. not slaughtered as an official disease control measure; and
      3. processed to remove the head, gills and viscera, and the internal and external surfaces thoroughly washed to remove any extraneous material; and
      4. inspected and graded, ensuring the product is free from visible lesions associated with infectious disease; and
      5. not juvenile salmonids (fish weighing less than 200g in head-off, de-gilled and eviscerated state) or sexually mature adults/spawners (fish with developed gonads).

  4. Certification must:

    1. be issued by the competent authority of the source country of the salmonid fish, and
    2. include the name and registration number(s) of the farm(s) from which the raw material was harvested.

Processing

  1. Salmonids must only be processed in the following approved countries: Canada, Denmark, Norway, Philippines, Poland, Republic of Ireland, Sweden, Thailand, the United Kingdom and/or the United States of America.

  2. Only product derived from salmonid species listed at Appendix 1 may be imported into Australia.

  3. The fish must meet the following import conditions.

    To demonstrate compliance with this requirement you must present the following on an Official Government Certificate:

    A statement that:

    1. the salmonid products have been processed to remove the head, gills and viscera, and the internal and external surfaces thoroughly washed to remove any extraneous material.
    2. the salmonid fish were processed in premises subject to regular inspection and audit under the supervision of the competent authority to ensure that processing practices and quality control systems are in place.
    3. the final salmonid products for export to Australia have been processed from raw salmonid materials imported exclusively from countries approved by Australia and were subject to effective separation controls to ensure the prevention of inadvertent or deliberate substitution, and the prevention of comingling with, or contamination by, aquatic animal material originating in countries other than those approved.
    4. movement of final salmonid products intended for export to Australia have been effectively tracked through all stages of processing. Name and registration number of source farm and processing facility/ies must be included on the Official Government Certificate.

  4. The salmonid products must be packaged individually, in plastic sleeves, pouches or other packaging, or as loose pieces in cartons of any weight, and is:

    1. in a consumer ready form1; or
    2. not in a consumer ready form

  5. Certification must be issued by either:

    1. the only processing country;

      Or

    2. the final processing country, making attestations on behalf of any other processing countries, based on sighting the accompanying certification issued by the previous processing country.

      And

    3. be accompanied by a certified copy of the source country health certification

1 Consumer ready form is:

  1. cutlets, including the central bone and external skin but excluding fins, each cutlet weighing no more than 450 grams
  2. skinless fillets, excluding the belly flap and all bone except the pin bones, of any weight
  3. skin-on fillets, excluding the belly flap and all bone except the pin bones, each fillet weighing no more than 450 grams
  4. eviscerated, headless ‘pan-size’ fish, each fish weighing no more than 450 grams
  5. product that is processed further than described above.

Australian import permit conditions - post arrival in Australia

Salmonid products sourced, processed and exported from approved countries (excluding New Zealand)

End use – Human consumption

On arrival in Australia

  1. On arrival in Australia, the department will review the government certificate accompanying the salmonid product and will be directed:

    1. as a consumer ready product or
    2. as a product for further processing.

  2. Imported salmonid that is in a consumer ready form may be sold to any retailer.

  3. Any imported salmonid that does not fit the consumer ready category must be sent to an Approved Arrangement for further processing to meet a consumer ready form, prior to release from biosecurity control.

  4. The importer must nominate an Approved Arrangement when they apply for an import permit. The imported salmonid will be directed to these premises on arrival.

Thermally treated salmonid products from a country with a recognised competent authority

End use – Human consumption

Processing

  1. Salmonids must only be processed and exported from a country where the certifying competent authority has been formally recognised for this trade, listed in Appendix 2.

  2. Only product derived from salmonid species listed at Appendix 1 may be imported into Australia.

  3. The products must meet the following import conditions.

    To demonstrate compliance with this requirement you must present the following on an Official Government Certificate:

    A statement that:

    1. the salmonid product was processed and treated at premises approved by and under the control of the competent authority.

      And

    2. the product was processed in accordance with one of the minimum time/temperature parameters set out below:

      1. for salmonid roe, the product was thoroughly washed to remove any extraneous material and heated at a minimum core temperature of 65°C for a minimum period of 30 minutes
      2. for skin-on/skinless fillets of any weight, the product was heated to a minimum core temperature of 65°C for a minimum period of 30 minutes

        Or

    3. the product is eviscerated, head-on rainbow trout (Onchorhynchus mykiss) and has been treated at a minimum core temperature of 66°C for a minimum period of 40 minutes;

      Certification must be issued by the competent authority of the processing country. Certification must include the name(s) and registration number(s) of the establishment(s) that processed the salmonid product.

  4. The products must be packaged individually, in plastic sleeves, pouches or other packaging, in cartons of any weight.

Appendix 1. Salmonid species approved for export to Australia

All species in the Genus
Brachymystax spp
Coregonus spp
Hucho spp
Oncorhynchus spp
Parahucho spp
Prosopium spp
Salmo spp
Salvelinus spp
Salvethymus spp
Stenodus spp
Thymallus spp
Plecoglossus spp

Appendix 2. Recognised countries and competent authorities

Country Competent authority
AustraliaDepartment of Agriculture and Water Resources
CanadaCanadian Food Inspection Agency
DenmarkDanish Veterinary and Food Administration
New ZealandMinistry for Primary Industries
NorwayThe Norwegian Food Safety Authority
Republic of IrelandIrish Sea Fisheries Protection Authority
United KingdomDepartment of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
United States of AmericaNational Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce
PhilippinesBureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Quarantine Services
PolandGeneral Veterinary Inspectorate
ThailandDepartment of Fisheries
SwedenNational Food Agency of Sweden

 

Last reviewed: 4 November 2019
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