Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) Update

Here is an update from The Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment

End of 2020-21 season
Welcome to the Department of Agriculture, Water, and the Environment’s (the department) general updates for the 2020-21 Brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) risk season.
We have reached the end of another BMSB season, and the department is busy planning and preparing measures for the 2021-22 BMSB risk season, which will soon be upon us.
This issue contains a summary of the 2020-21 BMSB risk season.

2020-21 End of BMSB season
An Import Industry Advice Notice will be published announcing the end of the BMSB risk season on 31 May 2021.
Please refer to the Industry Advice Notice for further information. You can subscribe to receive Import Industry Advice Notices here.

Master consolidators
Master consolidator declarations will be required to be lodged until 1 June 2021. If your consignment is due to arrive on or after 1 June 2021, a NIL RISK declaration is to be made.

Summary of 2020-21 BMSB season detections

This season saw a decrease in the number of live detections at Biosecurity entry points, indicating the biosecurity policy continues to be successful in minimising the risk posed by BMSB.
Of concern is increasing detections in the post border environment from pathway supply chains not currently targeted (air cargo and mail) by the current seasonal measures.
Up until 13 May 2021, there were 17 live and 178 detections of dead BMSB at Biosecurity intervention points. Post Biosecurity comprised 14 live and 13 dead BMSB detections. Interestingly, live BMSB were found in mail and air cargo, showing the true nature of the BMSB as a hitchhiker pest.

Summary of 2020-21 BMSB risk season measures

This BMSB risk season to 17 May 21 has comprised over 100,000 containers that were subject to measures, including 11,963 LCL/FAK containers.
Approximately 38% of FCX/FCL containers and 82% of LCL containers subject to BMSB measures were treated offshore and experienced faster border clearance with no onshore intervention required.
Since 1 September 2021, BMSB profiling has been applied to or accounted for:

56,077 full import declarations (approximately 11% of total declarations in this period)

11, 963 LCL/FAK containers declared by Master Consolidators

7817 (65%) have been automated without need for department intervention

SeaPest system removed 48,155 LCL consignments from being subject to BMSB

The department approved seven entities for Safeguarding Arrangements. Safeguarding provides an alternative clearance option for goods subject to BMSB measures. This scheme will continue for the 2021-22 season and the department encourages those companies who are able to meet criteria to safeguard their supply chains against hitchhiker pests to apply.

There were approximately 290 roll on roll off (RORO) vessels that were required to complete Seasonal Pest Questionnaires as part of on arrival reporting, with 190 BMSB inspections conducted as a result.

Most common concerns
Most concerns identified during the season were around:

  • Untreated break bulk, flat racks or open top containers – target high risk goods shipped to Australia without being treated offshore or exceeding the 120 hour window post treatment window resulted in over 55 consignments being directed for export.
  • Onshore treatments – containers were packed in such a way as to not allow for treatment to be conducted inside the container effectively resulting in goods being directed to a Class 4.7 Approved Arrangements for further intervention.
  • Mixing of small volumes of untreated target high risk goods with goods not subject to treatment resulting in whole consignments requiring treatment or containers being exported.
Offshore Treatment Providers Scheme
  • The offshore BMSB treatment providers scheme, registered 234 approved offshore treatment providers across 25 countries throughout the 2020-21 BMSB season.
  • Five offshore treatment providers were suspended, one offshore treatment provider was reinstated and two were withdrawn from the scheme during the course of the 2020-21 BMSB season.

2021-22 Proposed Seasonal Measures
A review of the measures is currently underway for the 2021-22 BMSB season. Updates will be published via an Industry Advice Notice and notified on our BMSB Webpage.

Further information  

Seasonal Pests Policy, Biosecurity Operational Division

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