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BA launches Chinese grape IRA

Australia’s produce sector could be mulling the prospect of Chinese grape imports arriving into the country before 2010

BA launches Chinese grape IRA
BA is assessing Chinese grape imports

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Government body Biosecurity Australia (BA) publicly launched its import risk analysis (IRA) of Chinese table grapes yesterday, triggering the start of a two-year time-limit to publish a draft report on the threat posed by Chinese grapes to Australian agriculture.

Announcing the IRA commencement in a press release, BA said it expects to have completed this particular pest and disease risk assessment before the official 24 months are up, thanks to the substantial amount of preliminary work already undertaken.

“Biosecurity Australia Policy Memorandum 2007/20 of 12 September 2007 advised stakeholders that changes to the import risk analysis (IRA) process had been implemented on 5 September 2007 when regulations made under the Quarantine Act 1908 formally took effect. That advice also notified the transitional arrangements for Biosecurity Australia’s import work program, including table grapes from China that would be conducted under the new regulated IRA process,” BA chief executive Colin Grant said in the press release.

“Although the regulations allow a timeframe of 24 months to complete a standard IRA, in view of the substantial preliminary work already undertaken, this IRA is expected to be completed in less than 24 months from this announcement.”

The next step is to release a draft IRA report to enable all interested stakeholders to comment and provide submissions, BA said.

Biosecurity Australia provides science-based quarantine assessments and policy advice that protects Australia's favourable pest and disease status and enhances Australia's access to international animal- and plant-related markets.

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