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The spread of invasive harmful organisms (quarantine pests) has become an increasing problem over the past decade.

Laws at international (European Union) and national (Austrian Plant Protection Act) level prevent the introduction and spread of these quarantine pests.



The Federal Ministry of Sustainability and Tourism is the Central authority at national level in Austria.

It is supported by the Federal Food Security Office and the Federal Forest Office, both Official Bodies, who carry out import controls and are international experts and contact points.

The Federal Forest Office has been established within the Department of Forest Protection at the BFW. As the Official Plant Protection Service for Forest Plants and Timber it has the following tasks:
  • ·         Implementation of the Austrian Plant Protection Act in terms of the official import control
  • ·         Development and implementation of nationwide surveying systems (monitoring) to assess the distribution of quarantine pests
  • ·         Development of technologies to ensure early detection of quarantine pests
  • ·         Research on new invasive harmful organisms and their impact on forestry and the environment

Hannes Krehan coordinates the Federal Forest Office with its inspectors based in Vienna, Innsbruck, Ossiach and Gmunden.

At state level the governor is the head of the Official Plant Protection Service. He coordinates the regional official bodies in charge of implementation represented by employees of Forestry Authorities, Chambers of Agriculture or certain agencies. Their tasks are:

  • ·         Export controls
  • ·         Issuance of plant passports
  • ·         Registration of companies
  • ·         Operational inspections
  • ·         Measures to prevent the spread of quarantine pests
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Federal Research and Training Centre for Forests, Natural Hazards and Landscape
Austria, 1131 Vienna, Seckendorff-Gudent-Weg 8 | Tel.: +43 1 878 38-0, direktion@bfw.gv.at
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