Industry Advice Notice no. 2004/15: Standards for Food Quality Shipping Containers

​​Date issued 29 July 2004

This is to advise that the 'Pink Book', the Standards for Food Quality Shipping Containers booklet has been reviewed and updated. The updated version is in PDF format and is available and may be downloaded from the Shipping Australia Limited (SAL), the AQIS Industry Cargo Consultative Committee (AICCC) and Department of Agriculture Fisheries and Forestry Australia (DAFF) websites. 

In 1988, the shipping industry and Government produced the booklet “Standards for Food Quality Shipping Containers” for use as a general guide and reference for all those involved in the supply, preparation and inspection of containers for the carriage of export foodstuffs. Since the publication of the Pink Book, it has been distributed widely by AQIS as part of the “Empty (Dry Box) Container Inspection Accreditation Course” as a primary reference tool for accredited inspectors.

In 2001, the shipping industry through Shipping Australia Limited reviewed and updated the content of the booklet to bring it in line with contemporary practice. The updated version was produced on CD and in PDF format. AQIS endorsed the updated version at this time. The updated PDF version, and not the Pink Book should now be used as the general guide and reference for standards for food quality shipping containers.

Companies that are operating Co-regulation Arrangements for empty (dry box) container inspections should ensure that their accredited inspectors have access to and are using the updated PDF version (printed in colour) by the time of the next AQIS audit of their arrangement.

The approved Standard for Food Quality Shipping Containers can be found at the following web sites:

Shipping Australia Limited:

AICCC: under 'Food Container Standard' main page

AQIS: 'Standards for Food Quality Shipping Containers'

Lois Ransom
A/g National Manager, Plant Programs

Contact Officer: Ray Elson
Telephone: 02 6272 4976

Last reviewed: 4 November 2019
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