12 June 2020
Who does this notice affect?
This notice is of interest to importers (and their customs brokers) of the following cucurbitaceous seed for sowing (including synonyms) from all countries:
- Citrullus lanatus (watermelon)
- Cucumis melo (cantaloupe)
- Cucumis sativus (cucumber)
- Cucurbita maxima (winter squash, pumpkin)
- Cucurbita moschata (butternut squash, pumpkin)
- Cucurbita pepo (zucchini)
- Lagenaria siceraria (bottle gourd)
- Trichosanthes cucumerina (snake gourd)
What has changed?
Phase 1 of revised import conditions for cucurbitaceous seed for sowing has commenced on 12 June 2020.
1. For Cucumis sativus (cucumber) seed for sowing only
Cucumis sativus seed for sowing must be treated with a broad-spectrum fungicide (e.g. Thiram) either prior to export, or on-arrival in Australian territory to manage the risk of the fungal pathogen, Diaporthe cucurbitae.
Seed lots that are treated offshore must be accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate that is endorsed with details of the treatment. If phytosanitary certification is not presented or accepted, consignments must be treated at an Approved Arrangement site in Australian territory.
Importers are reminded that limited approved arrangement sites are available to perform fungicide treatments in Australian territory, and to ensure that arrangements are made prior to importation.
2. For all cucurbitaceous vegetable seed species imported for sowing
The following additional declaration is required to manage the risk of khapra beetle (Trogoderma granarium) in full container load consignments of cucurbitaceous seed for sowing, imported from countries where khapra beetle is present:
"The plant product(s) were inspected and found free from khapra beetle (Trogoderma granarium)."
All other import conditions continue to apply, including:
- Mandatory enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) testing for Cucumber green mottle mosaic virus, Kyuri green mottle mosaic virus, Zucchini green mottle mosaic virus and Melon necrotic spot virus for host seed species of these pathogens. For offshore tested seed lots, phytosanitary certification and laboratory reports will be required to confirm that the seed was found free of target pathogens.
- Mandatory broad-spectrum fungicide treatment (e.g. Thiram) for Cucumis melo seed.
Consignments in-transit to Australian territory
Consignments that were exported to Australia prior to 12 June 2020 are permitted entry into Australian territory under previous conditions (i.e. no mandatory treatment for Cucumis sativus seed, and khapra beetle conditions).
- Commercial documentation must be provided to the Department to verify that the date of export was prior to 12 June 2020.
- Consignments not meeting this requirement will be subject to the revised conditions as outlined in this notice.
The measures that are introduced on 12 June 2020 represent the first of several phases to implement the final review of import conditions for cucurbitaceous vegetable seeds for sowing. The implementation of further phases is dependent on risk management options being operationally available.
The department will keep stakeholders updated in regards to the approach and commencement date for subsequent phases, as this information becomes available.
Enquiries can be directed to 1800 900 090 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org (please title the subject line of the email with ‘Plant Tier 2 – Vegetable seeds’).