105-2018 - Changes to sulphuryl fluoride treatment requirements for timber and timber products to take effect on 11 September 2018

​31 August 2018

Who does this notice affect?

Importers, customs agents and offshore treatment providers of timber and timber products.

What is Changing?

On 11 September 2018, amendments will be made to sulphuryl fluoride treatment requirements for timber and timber products, including timber/wood packaging and dunnage when imported as a commodity. These changes align the offshore sulphuryl fluoride treatment requirements for timber and timber products with those in ‘Annex 23 Sulphuryl fluoride fumigation treatment for nematodes and insects in debarked wood’ of the International Standard for Phytosanitary Measures 28 ‘Phytosanitary treatments for regulated pests’ (ISPM 28 Annex 23).

Importers of timber and timber products that choose to treat their consignments with sulphuryl fluoride fumigation offshore after 11 September, 2018, will need to ensure that their goods are treated according to the following specifications:

  1. A minimum of 48 hours at a commodity core temperature of 20.0°C or above with a minimum concentration of 29 g/m³ (achieving a minimum CT of 3,000 g-h/m³); or
  2. A minimum of 24 hours at a commodity core temperature of 30.0°C or above with a minimum concentration of 41 g/m³ (achieving a minimum CT of 1,400 g-h/m³).

For goods treated in Italy, the department will only accept evidence of treatment on treatment certificates issued by providers on the Offshore Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) Treatment Providers Scheme or on a Phytosanitary Certificate. For goods treated in all other countries, the department will accept evidence of treatment on treatment certificates from all commercial treatment providers or Phytosanitary Certificates.

Further information

These necessary changes follow the publication of ISPM 28 Annex 23. The changes also provide clarity as the department’s current sulphuryl fluoride treatment requirements are unclear with regards to the minimum concentrations of the fumigant that must be maintained over the course of the fumigation. The above changes align Australia’s import conditions with international standards for the use of sulphuryl fluoride as a phytosanitary treatment for timber and timber products. The changes to the sulphuryl fluoride treatment specifications are considered to be efficacious against timber and timber product pests.

The department will continue to accept sulphuryl fluoride treatment for timber and timber products where it is currently listed in BICON and timeframes for treatment prior to export will not change.

For further information of the upcoming changes please contact Plant Import Operations on 1800 900 090 or email Imports.

Last reviewed: 4 November 2019
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