The Australian Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF) has released its final import risk analysis for fresh lychees from Taiwan and Vietnam recommending that the fruit be permitted entry with certain quarantine conditions.
DAFF’s report identifies several quarantine pests including fruit fly, litchi fruit borer and mealybugs that require appropriate preventative measures.
It stipulates the need to develop a work plan with Taiwan and Vietnam’s biosecurity authorities who would have to demonstrate phytosanitary systems that comply with Australia’s import requirements.
“DAFF may visit Taiwan and Vietnam to audit the implementation of agreed import conditions and measures, including registration of production sites, operational procedures in packing houses and any treatment practices.
“No import permit will be issued until DAFF is completely satisfied that import conditions are consistent with measures proposed to manage biosecurity risks, and that Taiwan and/or Vietnam are able to comply. The issuance of an import permit is a regulatory process that is subject to judicial review.”
As such, the report emphasises that it does not represent the final approval for lychee imports, with many further steps to be taken.
Taiwan and Vietnam first requested permission to export lychees in 2003. Australia has received imports of this product from China and Thailand, with quarantine conditions, since 2004.