IFN 01-20 – Publication of holding order instruments

Date of effect: 13 January 2020


Importers and brokers acting on behalf of importers.


To advise importers and brokers that under subsection 15(9) of the Imported Food Control Act 1992 (the Act) the department has now published holding order and revocation instruments on our website. This notice supersedes IFN 12-19 – Publication of Holding Order instruments.

Key points

  • Holding order and revocation instruments will be published monthly on the holding orders for imported food webpage. These instruments will be published concurrently with the monthly failing food report.   
  • Holding order instruments related to label or risk food fails will not be published.
  • Importers of failing food will continue to receive notification when a holding order has been applied and why.


  • Holding orders are legal instruments issued under the Imported Food Control Act 1992 applied to food that:
    • has failed to comply with Australian standards,
    • is subject to a food recall or other incident and it is suspected it would not comply with Australian standards, or
    • there is evidence of a food safety issue with the food.
  • Under a holding order food is referred for inspection until a history of compliance can be demonstrated and then the holding order is revoked. This normally occurs after five consecutive passes or there have been no imports of a comparable consignment and the holding order has not been matched in two years from its implementation date.
  • We can also apply a temporary holding order on a food suspected of posing a serious risk to human health while the food safety risk is investigated. This emergency provision provides for the food to be held for up to 28 days, which can then be extended.

Subscribe for updates

Stay updated on changes to the requirements for imported food. Subscribe to the Imported Food Inspection Scheme.


Last reviewed: 13 January 2020
Thanks for your feedback.
Thanks! Your feedback has been submitted.

We aren't able to respond to your individual comments or questions.
To contact us directly phone us or submit an online inquiry

Please verify that you are not a robot.