SA fruit fly bins prompt rethink on Tasmania's biosecurity

RETHINK: DPIPWE's fruit fly disposal bins, located at the edge of control zones, are being reassessed in light of South Australia's metal bins.
RETHINK: DPIPWE's fruit fly disposal bins, located at the edge of control zones, are being reassessed in light of South Australia's metal bins.

Two new fruit fly quarantine bins installed at the edge of South Australia’s Riverland region provoked a reassessment of the bins used in Tasmania’s control zones.

The permanent metal bins used in South Australia have a flap at the front, which seals the bin.

South Australia has permanent quarantine stations located at: 

  • Sturt Highway at Yamba, between Mildura and Renmark
  • Eyre Highway at Ceduna
  • Barrier Highway at Oodla Wirra
  • Mallee Highway between Murrayville and Pinnaroo

And there are 18 fruit fly quarantine bin sites within the state.

South Australian law prohibits anyone from bringing fresh fruit and fruiting vegetables into South Australia unless they comply with import requirements.

Commercial importers need a plant health certificate or plant health assurance certificate to bring fruit and vegetables into the state.

Tasmanian fruit fly bins have a hole in the top, which has prompted concerns that flies could escape.

A Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment spokesperson said Tasmania’s roadside fruit disposal bins were “a temporary control action in direct response to this specific incursion”.

“Bins will be removed once Tasmania regains our fruit fly free status and control area restrictions are lifted. South Australian fruit disposal bins are permanent fixtures used to manage their unique situation.”

Tasmania’s fruit disposal bins are emptied regularly to stop flies breeding within the bins and escaping.

“The public response to the disposal bins has been very positive, with truckloads of material removed from the bins and destroyed in a controlled environment,” the spoksperson said.

After seeing the South Australian bins, DPIPWE is now reviewing Tasmania’s signage and disposal bins.

“Consideration is being given to whether the SA style bins are appropriate and cost effective.”

Visit dpipwe.tas.gov.au/fruitfly and report suspect produce on 6165 3774.