AQIS clarifies list of suspended products

15 March 2001

In line with its commitment to review on a daily basis and adjust as necessary yesterday's blanket ban on imported products from foot and mouth countries, AQIS Executive Director Ms Meryl Stanton today announced a number of adjustments.

The following products will be allowed into Australia as of today, under existing conditions to manage foot and mouth disease (FMD) risk:

  • Limited amounts of confectionery (including chocolate) and infant formula in personal luggage
  • Biological products (veterinary and human pharmaceuticals, and laboratory reagents)
  • Scoured wool and scoured animal hair (for products such as brushes)
  • Leather products other than horse equipment

Shipments currently on the water of products listed below will be allowed into Australia provided they were produced no later than 6 February in the United Kingdom or no later than 28 February in France, other European Union countries or other non-EU countries in Europe:

  • Pig meat (Denmark only)
  • Lightly processed cheeses
  • Milk products (such as yoghurt) with more than 10 per cent dairy content that require refrigeration
  • Semen from non-FMD susceptible species
  • Used agricultural machinery

Other processed meat and diary products, canned or dried pet food will not be allowed into Australia from any European Union countries if they were produced later than 28 February. Horses and horse equipment are still subject to the temporary suspension.

"AQIS has reviewed long-standing risk management conditions for these commodities, and on the basis of experience and previous testing we're confident these products do not pose a risk of foot and mouth disease," Ms Stanton said.

"We have been free of this serious disease for 128 years, and Australians can rest assured that AQIS is adopting conservative quarantine management practices in its fine-tuning of the import bans.

"Yesterday it was necessary for us to act swiftly to put in place a blanket ban on products to ensure adequate immediate protection as the foot and mouth virus spread into Europe and other areas of the world.

"As was always intended, today's announcement clarifies the situation in relation to arrange of products."

Ms Stanton said she expects other adjustments will be made to the list of exemptions as AQIS technical experts are able to determine the risk status of commodities still on the suspension list.

Further inquiries should be directed to the web site: www.affa.gov.au

or to the FMD hotline - 1800 444 023

Further information:

DAFF Media +61 2 6272 3232