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DoormanAustralian Fumigation Requirements

Welcome to Australia Trade & Shipping inconjuction with New Zealand Shipping offering information about the requirements for fumigating personal effects / household goods to gain entry into Australia.

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We have had many experiences of late where people from New Zealand and Greece have had their shipping containers fumigated at the port of loading only to be told by Australian Quarantine officers that didn't matter they wanted them to go to licensed Australian Bond Store to be unpacked and inspected. This I might add is very, very expense to any new family arriving into Australia.

So here is the Australian Quarantine regulations for fumigating 20 ft / 40ft shipping containers of personal effects / household goods and commercial cargo containing wood / timber / bamboo

Prescribed minimum concentration of Methyl Bromide (CH3Br) for various temperatures
( except under vacuum - see note 2 below )

48 g/m3 ( 3 lbs / 1000 cu ft) for 24 hours at minimum of 21 deg C (70 deg F) or above

56 g/m3 (3.5 lbs / 1000 cu ft) for 24 hours at minimum of 16 deg C

64 g/m3 (4 lbs / 1000 cu ft) for 24 hours at minimum of 11 deg C

72 g/m3 ( 4.5 lbs / 1000 cu ft) for 24 hours at minimum of 6 deg C

80 g/m3 (5 lbs / 1000 cu ft) for 24 hours at minimum of 1 deg C


1. Treatments undertaken below 0 degrees Celsius will not be accepted

2. Methyl Bromide under vacuum is only acceptable if applied at
64 g/m3 for 4 hours at 21 degrees C or above under vaccum ( 660 mm vacuum)
64 g/m3 for 5 hours at a minimum of 4 degrees C under vaccum ( 660 mm vacuum)

3. In most cicumstances the minimum concentration required for barrier concerns is 48 g/m3 CH3Br. However, AQIS has granted one exemption. Due to Environment Health Authority (EHA) requirements in Singapore, it is against the law to fumigate with Methyl Bromide at rates above 40 g/m3. Should an accredited person receive a certificate at this rate the time exposure must be a minimum of 30 hours to compensate for the lower rate. Should a Singapore certificate state the normal recognised rate of 48 g/m3 CH3Br for 24 hours then this should be accepted. Please note this exemption applies to SINGAPORE only

4. Accredited persons must not accept certificates which state that a treatment in excess of 128 g/m3 of Methyl Bromide has been applied. Such certificates are to be referred to AQIS for consideration.

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The Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS) have announced changes to their regulations effective 1st April, 2001 which will affect any company exporting LCL cargo to Australia and uses timber in its packaging. LCL cargo will then have the same requirements as FCL cargo.

Under the new procedures, the Customs Broker will declare any untreated wooden packaging used with the consignment upon lodgement of an LCL Customs entry. LCL packaging information may be sourced by the Customs Broker from documents prepared in the normal course of business such as the commercial invoice, bill of lading, packing list and insurance documents. There will be no need for Exporters to complete additional documents.

If the Customs Broker determines there are wooden packaging materials in the LCL consignment i.e. cases, pallets, crates, skids or pallet cartons with wooden skids they will look for the appropriate treatment certificate. If the certificate is available then no further action is required.

If there is no Certificate available the Customs Broker will assume the timber is untreated and will declare this on the entry. The consignment will be subject to the following three options:-

  • Removal of wooden material for destruction or re-export

  • Fumigation

  • Inspection by AQIS

Companies which use wooden packaging to ship their products to Australia and already use treated timber or have their consignments fumigated prior to shipment will not be affected provided the appropriate Certificate is sent along with the other commercial documents. Treatment Certificates for LCL cargo timber components must include the following features:-

  • The type of treatment used e.g. Fumigation

  • The type of chemical used (if applicable) eg: Methyl Bromide (CH3Br) or Sulphuryl Fluoride (SO2F2)

  • The Concentration of the chemical used

  • The duration of treatment expressed in hours

  • The minimum ambient temperature during the treatment expressed in Degrees C (Celcius) or Degrees F (Fahrenheit)

  • Numerical Link – It is essential that the treatment certificate can be linked to the cargo & AQIS will permit the numerical link in such formats as a bill of lading number, a commercial invoice number, marks & numbers, a packing list number, a preferential tariff certificate number or a container number.

The use of untreated timber in packaging may cause unnecessary delays and additional costs to the Importer. It is suggested that all wooden packaging material, including cases, pallets, crates, skids or pallet cartons with wooden skids be made from treated timber or the consignment fumigated before shipment.

Due to the time constrains by our Overseas Offices and Agents they would be unable to Fumigate our Groupage containers prior to shipment.

If you require further information or advice please contact our office or your customs Broker. Alternatively you can visit the AQIS web site at which can give you more information.

Please feel free to contact us at Australia Trade & Shipping.

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