Brown marmorated stink bug requirements

MPI is working to reduce the risk of brown marmorated stink bugs (BMSBs) getting into New Zealand. Stink bugs are a serious pest for agriculture and horticulture and can be a social nuisance. If you're importing vehicles, machinery or equipment there are requirements you must meet.


27 February – Guidance for imports from Japan

MPI has released guidance for vessel operators and importers to manage pests (including brown marmorated and yellow spotted stink bugs) on vehicles, machinery and vessels from Japan. The guidance is valid from 23 February until 30 April 2018.

20 February – IHS update

The IHS for Vehicles, Machinery and Tyres has been updated. From 19 February 2018, exports from Japan of used:

  • vehicles (cars and trucks) must be processed by an MPI-approved vehicle system
  • machinery or other types of used vehicles must provide certification of cleaning by an MPI-approved cleaning provider.

24 January - Revised IHS available

To help manage the risk of brown marmorated stink bug (BSMB) infestation, we've revised the current import health standards (with chief technical officer directions) for:

Consultation on a new vehicles, machinery and equipment IHS closed on 29 January 2018.

BSMB measures for target goods

If you're importing break-bulk (not in a container) or containerised sea cargo from the United States or Italy, you must meet certain MPI requirements to manage the risk of brown marmorated stink bugs (BMSB) getting into New Zealand.

MPI targets imported goods that have a higher risk of carrying the pest. These goods include new and used vehicles, vessels, and machinery which:

  • must be treated before shipment if from the USA or Italy
  • must be managed specifically to control BSMB (and other pests) if from Japan
  • may be inspected if from a country of concern for BMSB.

You must provide documentation to MPI showing your goods meet the requirements.

The definition of vehicles and machinery is broad – check which goods are included in the Import Health Standard (IHS) for Vehicles, Machinery and Tyres.

All containerised goods from Hungary, Italy, Japan, and the USA are at risk of carrying BMSB and may be inspected during the BMSB season.

BMSB season – when the measures apply

The treatment requirements apply to:

  • vehicles and machinery shipped from the USA all year round
  • vehicles and machinery shipped from Italy from 1 September 2017 to 30 April 2018 inclusive (we may apply emergency measures if we find BSMB infestations)
  • all containers of goods from Italy other than vehicles and machinery until 28 February 2018 inclusive on arrival in New Zealand.

However, MPI plans to make the seasons for the USA and Italy the same in 2018. A new vehicle IHS was drafted for public consultation in December 2017 and includes the revised season dates.

Requirements for target goods

If you're importing vehicles or machinery, you must meet the following requirements.

BMSB inspections

To make sure the measures to manage BSMB are working, MPI inspects specific goods from Hungary, Italy and the USA (as well as countries of emerging BMSB concern) throughout the season. You also have a legal obligation under the Biosecurity Act 1993 to notify MPI of risk pests, such as BMSB.

Voluntary trapping

Light traps have been effective in previous seasons to help operators quickly find and respond to BMSB. Manufacturers, importers and shipping line operators are encouraged to use traps to monitor for the presence of BSMB in:

  • manufacturing and storage facilities
  • load ports
  • shipping vessels. 

Voluntary use of trap lights may reduce the need for verification of the vessel when it arrives in New Zealand. Report any pests to MPI.

How we charge

For all imported goods, MPI charges the owner or importer of the goods for our services, including:

  • processing documents
  • risk assessments
  • inspections.

Extra costs may be incurred if a new infestation of viable BMSB is found on a vessel before goods are unloaded to the wharf.

About BMSB

Our fact sheet contains information about the potential impact that BMSB could have in New Zealand.

Who to contact

If you see insects on imported goods, report them either:

  • directly to a quarantine officer
  • to MPI on 0800  80 99 66

If you have questions about BSMB measures:

Any changes to the BSMB measures will be published on the importing vehicles webpage.  

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