04-2017 - New sampling protocols for suspended uncooked prawns and uncooked prawn meat imports

17 January 2017

Who does this notice affect?

This notice is of interest to importers of uncooked prawns and uncooked prawn meat and associated industry participants and retailers.

What has changed?

Following the suspension of:

  • uncooked prawns and uncooked prawn meat; and
  • uncooked prawns and uncooked prawn meat that have been marinated for human consumption.

An enhanced inspection and testing regime was implemented for goods in transit at the time of the suspension. This notice describes the enhanced testing regime.

What are the new sampling protocols for uncooked prawns?

As part of the seals intact inspection of goods with a final/master Bill of Lading date at the port of origin on or before 8 January 2017, a biosecurity officer will take samples from each batch within a consignment. Thirteen samples, each containing a sub-sample of five prawns will be taken from each batch, department fees apply.

The samples from each batch will be sent to the importer’s nominated approved laboratory for testing at the importer’s expense. Batches returning a positive test result will be required to be cooked, exported or destroyed at the importer’s expense.

If cooking is chosen as an option, the importer must contact the department to determine how and where this will be done.

Batches returning a negative test result will undergo a confirmatory test at the Australian Animal Health Laboratory (AAHL) using the residual sample provided by the importer’s nominated approved laboratory.

The results of this testing will be provided by AAHL to the department. The department will provide notification to the importer of the test results and any required action relating to specific batches. The cost of the confirmatory test at AAHL will be met by the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources.

What are the new sampling protocols for uncooked marinated prawns (wet or dry)?

As part of the seals intact inspection of goods with a final/master Bill of Lading date at the port of origin on or before 8 January 2017, a biosecurity officer will take samples from each batch within a consignment. Thirteen samples, each containing a sub-sample of five prawns will be taken from each batch, department fees apply.

The samples from each batch will be sent to AAHL for testing. The results of the testing will be provided by AAHL to the department. The department will provide notification to the importer of the test results and any required action relating to specific batches.

The cost of testing at AAHL will be at the importers expense and is available on request from AAHL.

Contact information

If you require further information please call 1800 900 090 or email Imports.

Import biosecurity conditions are available in the department’s Biosecurity Import Conditions database (BICON).