Import Industry Advice 199/2022

Destruction of unregulated animal-based pet food (including rawhide dog chews) in the mail pathway

Who does this notice affect?

This notice is of interest to importers of animal-based pet food and departmental biosecurity officers at international mail centres.

What has changed?

Biosecurity Animal Division recently conducted a risk analysis of unregulated animal-based pet food in the mail pathway and concluded that these goods present biosecurity risk beyond Australia’s Appropriate Level of Protection (ALOP) as defined in section 5 of the Biosecurity Act 2015. Due to the extent of these risks, such goods arriving by mail will be destroyed, with no option of re-export. This change is scheduled to take effect on 17 October 2022.

Animal-based pet foods often contain beef, pork, lamb, chicken, and fish. Unregulated animal-based pet foods arrive without meeting Australia’s biosecurity import conditions. They present a high animal biosecurity risk due to the possible presence of exotic pathogens. These include infective agents for African swine fever, foot and mouth disease, and bovine spongiform encephalopathy.

The importer (person in charge) will be provided with a notice informing them that their goods will be destroyed with no option of re-export unless import conditions are met, which includes providing the relevant documentation within 14 days.

The destruction policy applies only to unregulated animal-based pet food in the mail pathway including when ingredients in the product are unclear. For products that are clearly non-animal-based pet food (e.g. vegetarian pet food), the on-shore management requirements remain unchanged.

Further information

If you require further information, please e-mail [email protected] with ‘Destruction of animal-based pet food’ in the subject line or contact Imports on 1800 900 090.