The Department of Agriculture update: Urgent action needed on Khapra Beetle infestatons

The Department of Agriculture has (13 August 2020) issued a notice that it is planning urgent action on Khapra Beetle infestations. Importers of plant products, freight forwarders, customs brokers and high-volume specialist operators will be affected.

Among the urgent actions are: growing biosecurity threat to grain and oilseed products around the world. It can also seriously infest cargo – even packed and plastic-wrapped cargo.

Khapra beetle (Trogoderma granarium) is Australia’s number two National Priority Plant Pest and the number one plant priority pest for grains. It is not present in Australia, but it is a highly invasive pest that poses a major threat to Australia’s grains industry. The species feeds directly on goods such as stored grain and dry food stuffs, which can result in significant damage. Infested goods may also become contaminated with beetles and cast larval skins and hairs, which can be a health risk and are difficult to remove from grain storage structures and transport vessels.

Goods that have been thermally processed and commercially manufactured and packaged such as retorted, blanched, roasted, fried, boiled, puffed, malted or pasteurised goods, and commercially manufactured frozen food and frozen plant products or oils derived from vegetables or seed will be exempt. Read more here.