We have completed a final report for the fresh Capsicum spp. (capsicum and chilli) fruit for human consumption from Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu risk analysis. We will now verify that the countries can meet the import conditions.
When we do a risk analysis, we:
- review the science on pests and diseases of concern
- assess and analyse biosecurity risks
- develop proposed risk management measures, if required
- consult the public on the draft report and then review comments
- publish the final report
- verify that the country can meet the import conditions
- develop import conditions
- publish import conditions in our Biosecurity Import Conditions system (BICON).
About the risk analysis
We initiated this risk analysis because Pacific Island countries requested market access for fresh Capsicum spp. fruit to Australia. It was undertaken as a Pacific Horticultural and Agricultural Market Access (PHAMA Plus) program activity to improve trade pathways for exports from Pacific Island countries, including considering new market access opportunities. Learn more about why we carry out risk analyses and our international obligations.
We conducted this risk analysis as a review of biosecurity requirements. This is because we conducted an assessment of the potential quarantine pests associated with Capsicum spp. from Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu and have found that:
- the pests of concern are the same, or of the same pest groups, as those pests that have been assessed previously for other horticultural goods
- there are appropriate risk management measures already established for these pests or pest groups.
Summary of the final report
We released the final report on 20 December 2021.
We recommend that the importation of fresh Capsicum spp. fruit from Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu be permitted provided they meet the biosecurity import conditions. All imports must come from commercial production areas of these countries.
13 pests associated with Capsicum spp. fruit are identified as present in the Pacific Island countries and need risk management measures to reduce the risk to an acceptable level. These pests are:
- fruit flies: oriental fruit fly (Bactrocera dorsalis), tropical fruit fly (Bactrocera facialis), fruit fly (Bactrocera kirki), Fijian fruit fly (Bactrocera passiflorae), New Guinea fruit fly (Bactrocera trivialis), Pacific fruit fly (Bactrocera xanthodes) and melon fly (Zeugodacus cucurbitae)
- whitefly (Bemisia tabaci complex)
- mealybugs: Pacific mealybug (Planococcus minor) and Jack Beardsley mealybug (Pseudococcus jackbeardsleyi)
- thrips: chilli thrips (Scirtothrips dorsalis), melon thrips (Thrips palmi) and onion thrips (Thrips tabaci).
The three thrips species are assessed as regulated articles for all of Australia as they are capable of harbouring and spreading emerging orthotospoviruses that are quarantine pests for Australia. Pacific mealybug and melon thrips have been identified as regional quarantine pests for Western Australia. Melon thrips is also a regional quarantine pest for South Australia.
Risk management measures
We recommend a range of measures to reduce the risk of these pests arriving in Australia via the Capsicum spp. fruit pathway.
- For whiteflies, mealybugs and thrips:
- pre-export visual inspection, and if found, remedial action, or
- methyl bromide fumigation.
- For fruit flies:
- area freedom (including pest free areas, pest free places of production or sites), or
- fruit treatment considered to be effective against all life stages of fruit flies present in the exporting country, or
- conditional non-host status for specific Capsicum spp. varieties for specific fruit fly species
Your feedback on the draft report
Following consideration of stakeholder comments, and a subsequent review of scientific literature, we made changes to the risk analysis report. These changes include:
- amendments to text in the pest initiation and categorisation table (Appendix A) to update the distribution and pest status of some species
- the addition of Appendix B ‘Issues raised in stakeholder comments’, which summarises key stakeholder comments, and how they have been considered in this final report
- minor corrections, rewording and editorial changes for consistency and clarity.
Download submissions on the draft report
Available until December 2022.
|Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries PDF||2||723 KB|
|Western Australia Department of Primary Industry and Development PDF||7||492 KB|
|Biosecurity Authority of Fiji||1||134 KB|
Published submissions may not meet Australian Government accessibility requirements as they have not been prepared by us. If you have difficulty accessing these files, contact us for help.
Download final report
Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, December 2021.
If you have difficulty accessing these files, visit web accessibility for help.
We released the draft report on 16 April 2021 for a 60-calendar day public consultation period, closing on 15 June 2021.
Download draft report
Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, April 2021.
Available until December 2022.
If you have difficulty accessing these files, please visit web accessibility.
More information about this risk analysis is available in the Announcement Information Paper.
Download Announcement Information Paper
Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, May 2018.
Available until December 2022.
If you have difficulty accessing this file, visit web accessibility for assistance.
Australia-Pacific Island countries trade
Australia is a net exporter of agricultural products to Pacific Island countries. In 2018-19, the major Australian agricultural exports to the Pacific Island countries included cereals (particularly wheat), dairy products and meat.
The main agricultural imports into Australia from the Pacific Island countries were oil-seeds, coffee, spices, fish, fruits, nuts and vegetables.
Capsicum spp. industry in Pacific Island countries
Agriculture remains a significant sector of the economies of Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu. Commercial production of chillies, capsicums and other peppers is mostly small scale, for sale in the domestic market or for processing (drying or freezing). Fiji and Tonga export small volumes of fresh chillies to New Zealand.
Between 2011 and 2018, the department conducted multiple visits to observe capsicum and chilli production practices in Pacific Island countries.
Capsicum spp. industry in Australia
Capsicums and chillies are grown year-round and across most states in Australia. Two thirds of production occurs in Queensland, with major centres of production in the Bowen-Gumlu and Bundaberg regions. Most capsicums and chillies are grown outdoors, however production in greenhouses is increasing in the southern states.
In 2019-20, Australia produced approximately 2,092 tonnes of chillies, valued at $8.5 million and approximately 71,718 tonnes of capsicums, valued at $213 million.
In 2019-20, Australia exported around 511 tonnes of fresh Capsicum spp. fruit. Australia’s main export markets for fresh Capsicum spp. fruit are New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, New Caledonia, Fiji and Brunei.
Capsicum spp. imports into Australia
Australia currently accepts imports of fresh capsicum and chilli fruit from New Zealand and the Republic of Korea. Australia imported 695 tonnes of Capsicum spp. fruit in 2019–20.
Before imports can commence we will:
- Verify that the countries can meet our specified import conditions.
- Publish import conditions on the Biosecurity Import Conditions system (BICON).
- Issue import permits to importers who meet the import conditions.
Register as a stakeholder
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For more information, email imports or phone 1800 900 090 (option 1, option 1).