Customs requirements for samples forwarded to Australia
Australian Customs prevents the importation of items which may contain biota in order to prevent the spread of foreign insects or dieseases to Australia. They have the authority to destroy any suspicious items and may lay criminal charges against those attempting to bypass their regulations. They may also make financial charges for costs of sterilization or inspection for samples which are legal to import. Consequently samples sent to Australia must be biologically clean and declared correctly on the shipping documents.
The samples must be clean, dry and free of all soil and organic materials such as moss, lichen etc. Any samples not meeting these requirements must be sterilized. Samples collected from underground and washed clean and dried are readily acceptable and cause no trouble. Surface samples should be carefully cleaned. Please do not send crushed samples as the Customs inspectors consider these to be soils and insist on sterilizing them! Samples must be in "sealed containers" ("press seal" plastic bags will suffice).
Please mark the customs declaration "Samples for analysis - No Commercial Value" .
Australian customs may charge to inspect the samples and may require fumigation or sterilization (at additional cost) if they suspect there may be a biological risk. They frequently vary their rates but the best solution by far is to send only clean, dry samples to avoid quarantine complications and charges. If you send small samples (10-50 gms) and ensure they are lumps free of all soil, dust and lichens and are not pre-crushed, there is a good chance that they will get through without charge.
Only about 1 gram of sample is required for analysis - but to allow some loss in sample preparation a minimum of a 10 gram lump is required, with the ideal size being a lump about 3-4 cm across (about 50 gm).
It is best to send samples by post. Mail them to:-
Burlinson Geochemical Services Pty. Ltd.
PO Box 37134
Winnellie NT 0821
If you prefer to send samples via a freight company rather than by post, please address them to :-
Burlinson Geochemical Services
Darwin NT Australia
Phone 0411 443097 for collection