In light of the Zika virus epidemic, China has begun to use sulfuryl fluoride to fumigate shipments from countries that have been identified to be impacted by the Zika virus. This affects shipments of any item to China, but is of particular importance for QTS customers that ship medical devices, such as instruments, implants, etc.
The exact requirements vary for each specific port of entry, with some reports saying that only shipments from Florida are being required to be fumigated, whereas some reports are suggesting that ALL shipments from the United States are being required to be fumigated. It has been reported that some ports of entry might also accept a certificate of fumigation from the port of origin. If you have a product that is shipped to China, we suggest that you check with your Chinese customers and local import authorities to determine the exact requirements for your product.
If you determine that your medical device is required to be fumigated, it would be prudent to evaluate the impact of sulfuryl fluoride fumigation on product safety and functionality. Additionally, the methods of fumigation can vary substantially between different ports, so these differences should be factored in when evaluating your product and when putting shipping controls in place.
More information about this topic can be found at the following online resources:
- USDA Foreign Agricultural Service: Updated China’s Zika Disinsection Requirements for U.S. Exports: Regionalization Implemented
- The Wall Street Journal: China’s Zika Fumigation Rules Raise Worries for U.S. Exporters
- FedEx: Zika Preventive Measures in China
- Scarbrough International: Zika Virus Fumigation Requirements for China
- American Journal of Transportation: ZIKA Fumigation Requirments for U.S. Cargo to China