2014-07 - Change to requirements for registration (REF: IAN 2014-06) frequently asked questions

​​​​​Date of notice: 1 October 2014
Date of effect: 1 October 2014

Frequently asked questions - registered vessels

1. My vessel freezes and salts fish for export. Do I need to be registered? 

If you want to export your product using your vessels’ existing establishment number (without further processing at another establishment) then you will need to retain your export registration.

Your vessel will not need to be registered if you are selling and transferring your product directly to an export registered establishment for further processing before it is exported.

If you wish to export product to the European Union (EU) using your vessels’ existing establishment number then your vessel will need to remain export registered and EU listed.

2. My vessel shucks and freezes scallop meat for export. Do I need to be registered? 

Vessels that shuck shellfish (bi-valve molluscs) at sea for export will need to be registered. Shucking shellfish is not an activity that can be carried out by an unregistered vessel if the product is to be eligible for export.

3. If I deregister my vessel, can I still sell my frozen fish and salted fish to an export registered establishment for export? 

Yes - you may supply your product an export registered processing establishment. However, for the product to be able to be exported it must be received by a registered establishment that further processes the product for export and has procedures in place that assure the compliance of all products they receive. Refer to Question 7 for more information.

4. I have deregistered my vessel. Can I provide a transfer certificate to buyers of my product? 

No, transfer certificates can only be completed for product that is transferred from one registered establishment to another registered establishment.

5. I have deregistered my vessel, can I still freeze product in cartons pre-printed with my old establishment number? 

Yes you can, however it is the responsibility of the processing establishment to apply their export establishment number to any product further processed for export.

6. Can I freeze product in cartons pre-printed with the processors establishment number?

No, the processors establishment number can only be applied to the cartons once the product has been received by the registered processing establishment and is further prepared for export.

FAQ - Registered Processing Establishments

7. I want to receive frozen and salted products from unregistered vessels and aquaculture farms for export. What do I have to do?

Registered establishments can already receive some fish products from unregistered catcher boats and unregistered growing / harvesting establishments, provided the registered establishment has the required sourcing controls in place and receives the product directly from the catcher boat or aquaculture farm.
As this now includes frozen or salted product, you will require additional procedures, including:

  • Procedures to evaluate that each catcher vessel and each growing/harvesting establishment supplying frozen or salted fish conducts its operations under conditions that ensure that the fish products are protected from contamination, fit for human consumption and placed under temperature control (if applicable)as soon as practicable after harvesting
  • If frozen product is held for any period while en-route to your processing establishment you must be able to verify that the product was held under appropriate conditions (including appropriate temperature controls) for the period or each period that product was held
  • Procedures to evaluate the fitness for human consumption of the product to be exported at receival
  • Procedures to verify the suitability of the product received. This may include product testing and regular supplier review
  • You must maintain accurate records including - supplier details, transport details, date of receival, date of catch or harvest, quantity and condition of product on receipt. For product received frozen, records detailing the date/s that products were first packed or frozen
  • Maintaining appropriate production records detailing the further processes applied to the product before export.

8. The frozen product I am receiving from unregistered vessels is already packaged. Do I have to remove the existing packaging and re-pack the product as a part of reprocessing the product for export? 

No, provided you have procedures in place for:

  • Verifying that the fish have been captured, grown or harvested as per legislative requirements
  • Verifying that the packaging is fit for purpose and meets export requirements
  • Identifying the product so that a full and accurate trade description can be applied
  • Addition of the final trade description including your establishment registration number
  • Evaluating the fitness for human consumption of the product, including product testing, where required
  • Meeting importing country requirements.  

9. I already have an exemption from the department to receive frozen fish products from unregistered vessels. Do I still need to apply for this each year? 

Exemptions to receive frozen or salted fish products direct from unregistered vessels are no longer required, however, sourcing requirements apply (refer to answers to question 7)

FAQ - registered cold stores

10. My registered coldstore receives and stores fish from registered and unregistered vessels and establishments – how do I know which product to write transfer certificates for? 

Your coldstore is storage only establishment and can only issue transfer certificates for product that has been received from a registered establishment or registered vessel and has been received with a transfer certificate.

If you are supplying product to a registered processor you must issue a transfer certificate with that product.

11. If vessels freezing prawns don’t need to be registered, but can still supply product for export, can I export product from unregistered vessels directly from my registered coldstore?

No, if your establishment only stores (and does not process) product from unregistered vessels, product cannot be exported until further prepared at a registered processing establishment. The product will then be exported under the processing establishments’ registration number.
Cold stores are typically only registered as storage establishments and cannot process or prepare (other than store, handle and load) product for export.

12. Can I change my type of registration from storage to processing so that I can prepare product from unregistered establishments for export? 

Yes, depending on the type of preparation that you want to undertake and the suitability of your premise. Please contact a Food Safety Auditor at your regional departmental office for further advice.

FAQ - deregistration

13. How do I deregister my vessel/establishment? 

If you wish to de-register your establishment you will need to send a written request for de-registration detailing the name and registration number of your establishment. The request must be made by a person listed with the department as in management and control of the establishment.

Requests may be e-mailed to Dairy Eggs and Fish.

Or by mail:

Dairy, Eggs and Fish Export Program
Department of Agriculture
GPO Box 858
Canberra 2601 ACT

14. If I choose to deregister will I be charged a registration fee for the 2014-15 financial year?

You will be charged a part year registration charge for the 2014-15 financial year. Your charge will be dependent on how long you maintained registration for after 1 July 2014.

Please note: Invoices for this year’s registration charges have not been issued due to the department’s consideration of the small exporter rebate applications.

The department will issue invoices in early November. As such, for ease of administration, it is requested that you notify the department of your deregistration prior to 30 October 2014.

15. If I request deregistration, when will this occur? 

The date of deregistration will be the date that your request is received by the department or the date that you have nominated in the written request.

16. Further information?

Further enquiries should be emailed to Dairy Eggs and Fish.

Last reviewed: 4 November 2019
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